It may seem a slightly archaic technique but cooking with fire is on the rise in UK restaurants. Chef’s around the country, including Austin Latimer, Director of Food at Barworks, (who we recently interviewed for our blog) have turned to naked flames and smoke as a cooking technique, or believe the trend will flourish in 2019.
The fire craze is about letting great ingredients sing for themselves with minimum fuss; it’s about applauding an ingredient for its inherent flavour, not for a technique that’s been applied; it’s about returning to a very natural way of cooking.
Pitt Cue, deemed as the pioneers of indoor barbeque, have been cooking on the open fire for a number of years. What started as a food truck, the barbeque experts then moved to a tiny bricks-and-mortar site in Soho before opening a fully blown restaurant with an expanded bar. The rise and success of Pitt Cue is a testament to the growing trend that is cooking with fire.
As the name may suggest, Dirty Bones is another London establishment that have latched onto the public’s insatiable love of barbeque food. The New York inspired eatery has risen to fame over recent years and with dishes such as 12 hour braised beef short-rib it is no wonder, they now have sites open in Kensington, Soho, Carnaby, Shoreditch and Oxford.
Similarly, Middle-Eastern inspired Berber & Q have also seen increased popularity since their conception in 2015. They specialise in cooking spiced meats over charcoal and wood, taking inspiration from the streets and café culture of Tel Aviv.
The rise in popularity of barbeque – or cooking with fire – is undisputable and the success of the aforementioned restaurants demonstrates this. Despite it appearing to be a step backwards for chefs and a nod to our more primitive years, cooking with fire is, apparently, the future!