Ben Pearce

America has DJ Sneak. Iran has Ali Shirazinia. Germany has Timo Maas. The UK has Ben Pearce…

You are renowned for your culinary skills in the kitchen – who or what inspired you to get cooking in the first place?

I don’t know about renowned haha, but I was watching childhood videos at my parents house a few months ago and when I was about 2 I had a big play-kitchen complete with plastic cooker. I think from there I cooked with my mum a lot, only in the last few years have I really started to push myself and try to refine my cooking.

You love seasonal cooking and creating dishes that reflect what’s going on in nature and the weather. What will you be cooking this Spring and Summer?

It’s always Lamb and Pork for me in Spring and Summer as a main two, we’re lucky enough to get produce all year round but thinking British that’s the way I would go. Using light summery flavours and vibrant colours, always the best. I love seafood, that’s always my go-to thing when I’m thinking sunshine, outdoors rustic eating. Fish on a BBQ with some salads etc.

You have travelled all over the world DJing, what is the most unusual food you have ever tried?

I’d tried a lot of things before I started travelling, having Chinese friends growing up helped with that! I’ll always try something once and I haven’t found too many things I won’t eat. Some people would consider ostrich, crocodile etc to be unusual but the best thing I’ve found with travelling is perception. What’s considered odd to Western society is completely acceptable on the other side of the world, you have to lose the boundaries you’ve grown up with.

Your love of Thai food is legendary. What is your perfect Thai meal…?

Street food for sure, I’ve only been to Thailand once so far but of course eaten it a lot in Australia and everywhere else. The street food there is brilliant, so fresh. Cooking seafood right next to the sea on mobile kitchens. I do love a Mussuman curry myself.


Your good friend Eats Everything recently DJ’d in a fish & chip shop in Bristol as part of his ‘Fries With That’ album launch parties. What restaurant would you LOVE to have a party in?

Oh wow, I’ve DJ’d in a few restaurants myself in the past, however not really notable to speak of. It would have to be something very grand, just because of the irony of it. Perhaps Le Gavroche, my favourite restaurant I’ve been to food wise.

It is incredible how many DJs love to cook. Whose cooking skills have you discovered from the music world?

I speak with a lot of people about food, from promoters to other DJ’s of course. Particularly Amos (Waifs & Strays) I’ve actually cooked something with. I had a cook up in Brisbane with the club owner there, I know it’s a great passion of a lot of people. Seth Troxler has stamped his name on BBQ of course, it brings everyone together.

If you appeared on Master Chef what would you pull out of the bag to win the final?

I think if I was going to do Master Chef (believe me I’ve been tempted and bugged by friends to do so), I’d really use the time leading up to it to study a lot of things. I’d hope that my final dish would come to me during the competition. So far my own creations I’m still not sure on, I think the one I’m most proud of is only a starter. I smoked my own salmon, made a salmon mousse and served it with cucumber jelly, pickled cucumber, toasted rye breadcrumbs and lemon foam.

What ingredient and kitchen gadget could you not live without?

Salt and a good knife. Seasoning is everything and whilst I would say my blender, having a good sharp knife just streamlines everything.

What has been the hardest dish to master?

Pasta was and still is tricky, it’s worked fairly well once but I still think I need more practice. I’d love to be able to that as second nature, I’ll probably be practicing a lot with that this year.

The best burger in the world can be found at…

In a garden at a BBQ with your friends… corny eh? No, truth is I’m not a huge fan of burgers. I don’t usually order them, I had one recently in Liverpool which was nice, had chorizo and halloumi on top of the beef. I think most burgers that are minced fresh from good quality beef with enough fat and seasoning are going to be good.

Ibiza before our eyes is becoming one of the culinary hot spots in the world. Where are some of the places you enjoy dining at on the white isle?

Fish Shack stands out by a long way, the seafood is so good when it’s fresh. I’ve usually done flying visits to Ibiza or got a villa with friends and we do all the cooking there. I’m looking forward to discovering some of these hot spots, I’ll keep an eye out in this magazine for places to try.


What celebrity chef would you like a master class with?

I’d love to say Michel Roux Jnr but I’d be too intimidated and nervous. He came over to ask how the meal was when we ate at Le Gavroche and it was a bit surreal. I honestly think any chef, I’d like to get some more tips and learn some skills. I’ve looked into taking some part time courses etc.

We recently loved the foodie film ‘The Hundred Foot Journey’ – what is your favourite film or documentary about food?

I’m not sure I’ve seen too many feature length documentaries solely about food, I watch so many programmes on TV food related. A lot of Asian programmes to the classic British shows. I can never get enough.

You find yourself on Death Row. What is the last meal you choose…

I think it’d have to be Venison related, probably my favourite meat I think. It’s an impossibly hard question to answer, unless I could go for a tasting menu?! haha

A dish you just cannot stomach?

Haven’t found one yet… unless it’s badly cooked or tasteless. I think the underdeveloped chicken foetus I’ve seen/heard eaten in some parts of China would be too much for me.

Your Guilty Pleasures item of food?

There’s a Chinese takeaway across the road, the Salt n Pepper chips are to die for. Not even guilty about that though I guess, they’re amazing

Perfect hangover nosh?

As above. It’s a tradition to go over to Gordon’s with our friends and eat ourselves into a coma.

The dish you miss the most from your childhood days?

I think the only thing I loved as a child that I haven’t had when being older is tinned Ravioli. That stuff was so good as a kid, amazing.