Chef Slater’s Top 5 Ingredients of All Time!

Chef Slater’s Top 5 Ingredients of All Time!


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We’ve already ticked off Ebbers from the Food Team… And now it’s time to have a virtual snoop around our chef, Slater’s kitchen! Over the last 3 years, Slater has come up with hundreds of tasty, hack-filled, and rule-breaking Sidekick app recipes that have blown our minds and filled our bellies. I love taking the chefs outside of the studio kitchen and seeing how differently (or similarly) they stock their kitchens at home. Let’s jump right in…

  1. Good Corn Tortillas  

This hack is so simple, that I was instantly annoyed I hadn’t thought of it sooner! Usually, I tend to use bread to accompany as many leftovers from the fridge as possible (think very loaded sandwiches), but why not try tortillas instead? They’re super versatile and the options on fillings/toppings are endless. Here’s what Slater had to say:

Slater’s Tip: “I buy good corn tortillas in bulk from Mexgrocer - they keep for literally years when unopened. I then make tacos, tostadas or enchiladas with anything I have in the fridge. Usually something fatty like pancetta, a sharp green chilli hot sauce, and something lactic like Parmesan. On the weekends, eggs will usually be involved. I like to flavour panna cotta with any dried-up leftover tacos… Once sweetened they taste a bit like cherries!”

  1. Good Instant Noodles 

I’ve been training my Instagram and TikTok algorithm to be all things food, and one of my top things to watch are never-ending streams of noodle videos! Just like tortillas, noodles are known for their extremely versatile nature, making them perfect to have with almost anything (and a staple for many). In my opinion, whatever your heart and stomach desire can nearly always be fulfilled with a simple pack of noodles! 

Slater’s Tip: “You will always find at least 5 packets of instant ramen in my cupboard at all times. I do a big Asian supermarket run every month or so and load up while I buy other bits. I then get creative with toppings like five-spice fried lamb mince or adding some body to a broth with a tablespoon of tahini whizzed through with an immersion blender. The possibilities are almost endless.”

If you’re after some noodles inspo, check out our latest cookbook, CBA with the Rules! We have an entire chapter dedicated to instant noodle recipes that will completely transform the way you think about food - we’re talking instant ramen e pepe, ramen courgette fritters and more.

  1. Broad Bean Paste 

Doubanjiang, aka, broad bean paste, is made with fermented broad beans, chillies, wheat flour, and salt. If you’re looking for an explosion of savoury, spicy goodness… This can completely transform your dish!

Slater’s Tip: “I always keep spicy broad bean paste in my fridge, it's like a really fragrant, really spicy miso that is used throughout Sichuan cookery. It's traditionally used in dishes like Mapo Tofu, which I cook A LOT, but I also use it to amp up broths and sandwich fillings. Egg mayo will never be the same without it.”

  1. Top Quality Vinegar and Olive Oil

You don’t always have to spend a lot of money for good ingredients, the standard store versions can taste just as good. On the other hand, this isn’t always the case (as proven in some of our ‘Pick the Premium’ episodes)! Sometimes, spending some extra cash on select ingredients can make a massive difference to the overall flavour and texture of the dish.

Slater’s Tip: “Vinegar and oil are two things I spend quite a bit of money on, mainly because they are used in most of my cooking. I try to buy vinegar with the vinegar mother still in the bottle, which tastes like the alcohol it was made from. Cider vinegar should taste like apples, and wine-based vinegar should have rich dark fruit notes. I buy good, greek olive oil in bulk to save money, as close to the year’s harvest as possible to optimise quality. It should be so peppery that it burns the back of your throat a little when you have a tablespoon.”

  1. Parmesan 

Put your mind at cheese with this ‘grate’ ingredient - are you a parmesan lover?! I’m definitely a bowl of parmesan with a hint of pasta girl… I can never get enough. Having said that, I see Parmesan as more of a luxury and have never bought a block of it for home before (I tend to just go for a cheaper cheddar). After reading what Slater had to say, it definitely got me thinking differently…

Slater’s Tip: “You will always find a block of good parmesan in my fridge, and loads of Parmesan rinds in my freezer. Aside from the obvious carbonara and cacio e pepe benefits, it works really well grated over veg before roasting to add some crispy, savoury goodness. I also love it tossed with breadcrumbs for the ultimate pasta toppings. I use the rinds to add depth to stews, soups, and sauces.”

And that’s it from us… Now it’s over to you! What ingredients can you not live without in your kitchen? Do you use any of the above often? Let us know on IG or Twitter.


Ishy @ Sorted Food

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