I’ll be honest, life after The Great British Bake-Off hasn’t been easy. Only the other day, I found myself waking up at 6am in a cold sweat with a mixing bowl, some cake tins and a bag of flour strewn across the bed. So I can’t tell you how relieved I was when the new series of Masterchef: The Professionals started on BBC Two. In lieu of Mary and Paul, I now have eye-rolling ‘bad cop’ (but probably very lovely) Monica Galetti and hug-on-a-plate Greg Wallace. But of course, star billing must go to Mr Twinkly Eyes himself, Michel Roux Jr, who I’ve been lucky enough to grab an interview with. Bon appetit!
Girl About Tech: I see you’ve just launched your latest set of hob-to-oven pans with Greenpan, but which cooker do you most like to use them with?
Michel Roux Jr: When I’m working at Le Gavroche I cook with a bespoke Rorgue stove. It’s a huge island of a thing made entirely from stainless steel – it’s truly built for the professionals. At home in France, it’s a top-of-the-range Aga, which I love so much I’ve been known to talk to it!
GAT: Is there anything you can’t or won’t cook on?
MRJ: I am not keen on bamboo steamers. I think they impair food with a bad taste and smell – it’s also quite easy to burn them if you don’t position them carefully over the flame of hob.
GAT: What’s the one small electrical kitchen appliance you wouldn’t be without and why?
MRJ: I do like a stick blender – they’re very versatile and easy to handle.
GAT: You’re obviously very au fait with technology in the kitchen, but what about in other areas of your life?
MRJ: I’m not very techy at all – my daughter handles all of that for me.
GAT: What about listening to music?
MRJ: Most of the time, I listen to music either on my iPhone or on the radio, and although I don’t have any of those snazzy can headphones, I do have a set that won’t drop out of my ears when I’m running. I own a collection of old LPs, but I’ve got no deck to play them on.
GAT: What’s the one piece of technology that you wouldn’t be without?
MRJ: Definitely my iPhone. I don’t know what I’d do without it. I use it for work, emails, photos, radio, music – all it really needs is a mixer attachment and it would be complete!
GAT: Do you have any favourite apps?
MRJ: I like Chef’s Feed, where top chefs give reviews of their favourite restaurants and dishes, and mine of course! It’s called Fine Dining with the Master Chef and includes 67 step-by-step recipes, with wine recommendations from David Galleti, our Head Sommelier at Le Gavroche and lots of other bits and pieces that I think are informative and fun.
And now for the quick-fire round:
Induction or gas? MRJ: Induction
Microwave or steam oven? MRJ: Steam oven
LPs or MP3s? MRJ: MP3s
Mac or PC? MRJ: Mac
Cloud or Zip Drive or none!?! MRJ: Hard drive
Twitter or Facebook? MRJ: Neither thank you!
The Michel Roux Jr by GreenPan range starts from £50, and includes a milk pan, frying pans, saucepans and a covered sautesse for casseroles. The combination of a special non-stick coating, riveted metal handles and a tri-ply stainless-steel body means you can also bung them in the oven, so you can recreate Michel’s recipes for pear omelette soufflé with salted butter caramel sauce or braised beef cheeks with pear and bitter chocolate sauce without risking a side order of melted pan. Yay!