Jamie Havelock, Head Chef of Carmelite.
‘Like most chefs, my ambition is to have my own restaurant with my name over the door, but I can’t say I always wanted to work with food’, Jamie explained. ‘I enjoyed cooking with my grandmother at the weekends – she let me do the veg prep and taught me how to make scones and Yorkshire puddings, but as a teenager I thought I’d work in IT or as a plumber.
‘I got an after-school job at the Ashvale on Great Western Road. People might think it’s just a fish and chip shop, but service just as intense and behind the scenes is similar to many kitchens I’ve worked in. Working there changed my career plans completely. I studied professional cookery then joined the team at Malmaison. That filled me with ambition, so I moved to the Udny Arms, then the Foyer, before coming to Carmelite as sous chef. I’m now in my 3rd year as Head Chef here.
‘We’re all about quality food and innovative menus. I keep on top of trends by travelling and visiting restaurants in London and other major cities regularly.
I like to offer classics with a new twist, like our Deconstructed Prawn Cocktail. However, I always look for great taste with simple uncomplicated presentation.
‘One of my favourite things about Carmelite is the huge variety of menus, from our stable All Day Menu, late night Munchies and Mad Hatter Tea Parties to weddings and events. It’s action packed, but the team are fun!
‘It keeps me on my toes. When I’m not in the kitchen, I like to get away every few months for a few days in the sun or to explore new cities. I also like a good Netflix binge!’
Jamie Havelock’s Deconstructed Prawn Cocktail
Ingredients | MARIE ROSE SAUCE
> 200g mayonnaise
> 75g tomato ketchup
> The juice of ¼ of a lemon
> 1 dash Tabasco
> Pinch of paprika
Ingredients | PRAWNS (PER SERVING)
> 8 medium size raw prawns
> 1/2 lemon
> Small piece of celery
> White wine
> Pan full of water
> Chopped parsley – keep the stalks
MARIE ROSE SAUCE | Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.
PRAWNS | Place the celery, wine, water and black peppercorns in pan and bring to boil, add the parsley stalks, then add the prawns. Cook for 3-4 minutes, then drain and dress the prawns with rapeseed oil and chopped parsley and a pinch of cracked black pepper.
Garnish with baby gem lettuce leaves, cherry tomatoes, a shot of Bloody Mary made however you like it and diced beetroot with balsamic vinegar. Serve as shown or go retro by popping it all in Martini glass and serving the shot on the side with some buttered brown bread.