Martin Dorey, TV cook and author
One Man and his Camper Van is . .. a BBC2 TV programme that saw me drive my camper van around the UK, cooking with local ingredients and meeting interesting people along the way. And, yes, I did actually sleep in the van on every shoot day.
The van in the series is. . . My beloved VW camper “Goredale St David”, a 1979 2 litre, Type 2 Devon conversion with full length pop top (for the VW nerds out there).
I’ve written two books . . .The Camper Van Cookbook came out in 2010 and The Camper Van Coast was published this year.
It’s amazing what you can produce on a two-ring stove. . . People think it’s a handicap, but it’s not. You don’t have to have baked beans when you go camping. How about moules marinières, risotto or duck breast with celeriac mash?
My favourite camper van meal is . . .mussels, without a doubt.
I wasn’t always a cook and TV presenter. . . I am a writer first and foremost. So when I am not cooking, camping or doing all the other bits and pieces, you’ll still find me in my shed, writing for my clients. Before I retrained as a writer, I worked in the UK film industry as an assistant director.
I’ve had to do some strange things in my career. . . I once got bitten on the bum by the Esso Tiger. Fortunately it was a tiger cub for that particular advert.
And that story about helping Kylie out of a broom cupboard .. . It was at the Brit Awards. I was looking after the award recipients and had to show Kylie to her dressing room. She walked into the wrong door and ended up in a broom cupboard.
The best advice I’ve ever been given. . . My old man said “Manners cost nothing yet can buy you the earth.” Sage advice, I think.
When I’m not working. . . I spend time with my family, being a bit outdoorsy and cooking big Sunday roasts. I am married to a Co Waterford girl, Joanne, and have two lovely water babies, Maggie (9), and Charlotte (8).
The thing that I’m most proud of is. . . that I can make a living and support my family from writing.
My earliest food memory is .. . I am a product of the 1970s, so I remember chicken kiev and crispy pancakes Anyway, moving on . . .
The best thing I’ve ever eaten is. . . lobster, caught by me on our local beach, with mayo.
My dream dinner party guests would be. . . Debbie Harry, Rob Machado (surfer), Tim Minchin and Dara Ó Briain. I’d take them down to my local beach on a sunny summer’s day and teach them how to catch shrimp. Then we’d cook them over a beach fire.
Five things I always have in my larder are . .. rice, pasta, spices, chorizo and couscous.
I’m passionate about. . . plastic. The amount of plastic that washes up on our beaches is frightening.
I’m really good at . . .biting off more than I can chew.
I wish I was better at . .. Fishing. I am so bad at it that I only ever catch a few a year. Last time I went out I caught myself in the face and had to go to hospital to get the hook removed.
I often imagine myself. . . sailing the world in search of surf breaks. Then I remember I don’t have a boat and don’t know how to sail.
Not many people know this about me, but. . . I went to college with Steve Coogan and John Thompson at Manchester Polytechnic Film School.
In conversation with Marie-Claire Digby
Martin Dorey will be cooking at the Waterford Harvest Festival, September 10th-16th, waterfordharvestfestival.ie