It's lovely to have special traditions for Father's Day, and what better start than with a homemade breakfast. That is why we asked Dan Doherty, BBC's Britain's Best Home Cook judge and new dad to eight-month-old Tilly, for his perfect recipe....
He certainly has got plenty on his plate – as well as his starring role alongside Mary Berry and Claudia Winkleman, he has just taken over a pub in London’s Marylebone, opened a restaurant in New York and his popular cookbook, Toast Hash Roast Mash, was re-released in May. We wanted to find out how he would be spending Father’s Day, as well as get a taste of his ultimate breakfast – black pudding and yesterday’s potatoes. “I love a good hash, it reminds me of my dad making me bubble and squeak when I was a kid,” he says of the dish. “Using all the leftovers meant there wasn’t really a recipe, you just chucked it all in and let the magic happen. I used that philosophy too to create a whole section in my book Toast Hash Roast Mash!” His answers will make your heart melt. Words: Claire Brayford
What do you love about home cooking?
I’ve always loved cooking, and when you can do it at home with and for the people you love, well that’s perfect. Home cooking is rustic, nourishing and simple, but, most of all, full of flavour.
What do you remember about mealtimes growing up?
I remember good Sunday roasts with all the family together. Equally, I remember my sister cooking for my brother and I on weeknights if my parents were working, and that was great too (even though it was quite beige! Sorry Em).
Is it still one of your favourites?
Sunday roasts are my absolute favourite. I’ll have one every week, without fail.
What are mealtimes like in your house now?
Eating together is the goal when Tilly is a little older, but for now, she eats at 5pm ish so with work etc it’s challenging. If we are all here we’ll do mealtimes together though then eat our dinner once she’s gone down.
What does Tilly love to eat?
What doesn’t she love to eat! She’s at the age where she just chucks it all in and chomps away. I’m dreading the time when she starts getting picky. Hopefully, it won’t happen though. Cheese is her absolute favourite, she can’t get enough of it.
What challenges have you encountered being a father?
She’s only 8 months so haven’t had to deal with anything like that yet other than stopping her from pulling the dog’s ears off!
What kind of dad do you aspire to be?
One that is always there for her whenever she needs me – whatever the issue may be.
How do you want Tilly to view you?
Hopefully, like a good dad who doesn’t embarrass her…too much! As long as she knows I’m always there and she feels that she can talk to me, I’ll be happy.
What do you hope to teach her?
The perfect poached egg! I’d love her to know how to cook and eat well when one day she moves out. I have images of her eating something when she’s 40 and remembering us cooking it together.
What do many people not know about fatherhood?
Parenthood is hard! The beginning especially. It’s full-on, and as the stages progress, there are different challenges. It’s more than worth it of course, but when we were expecting I was a bit naïve as to just how hard it would be.
What is one of the best bits of being a dad?
Seeing this little girl look at you and smile. Or when she falls asleep on me.
And what’s the best parenting advice you have ever received?
Read ‘French Children don’t throw food’ – it’s a brilliant insight into the psychology of raising kids.
How has your style changed since becoming a dad?
Not really, other than everything I own having stains on it!
How will you spend Father’s Day this year?
No idea, work is pretty full on at the moment so just having a day with my girls is all I’m after. Hopefully a nice long lunch and a glass of wine.
What do you love about working with Mary Berry? Has she cooked for you yet?
She’s one of the most wonderful women I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and working with. She’s so brilliantly humble and curious about all things food. She hasn’t cooked for me but I really hope he will!
And with Claudia Winkleman?
She’s bonkers! No seriously, she’s incredibly smart and quick-witted. She’s great fun to be around and works really hard.
Who do you think is the toughest judge on the show?
We are all fairly relaxed, we are just looking for different things. That said, Mary will always be the one they want to impress, naturally!
And tell us about your next project?
I’ve just signed a lease on a pub in Marylebone and am working on a restaurant in New York so things are busy right now! Exciting, but busy! Can’t wait to share more info soon.
Dan Doherty’s Father’s Day black pudding & yesterday’s potatoes
“This dish is rich and earthy, and feels wonderfully gluttonous – perfect for a tender Sunday morning.” Serves 2 Preparation time: 5 minutes Cooking time: 20 minutes A handful of leftover roasties (or 1 large potato, cooked and peeled) 100g (3½oz) black pudding 25g (1oz) butter Sea salt flakes and freshly ground Black pepper 2 spring onions, finely sliced 2 eggs Brown sauce, to serve Cut the potatoes and the black pudding into 2cm (¾ inch) cubes, or thereabouts. Melt half the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat and sauté the potatoes for about 6–8 minutes, or until they start to brown. Season with salt and pepper. Add the spring onions to the pan and continue to sauté for 3–4 minutes – if they become a little coloured, this is fine. Stir in the black pudding and allow everything to cook slowly for 4–5 minutes over a low heat, tossing every 2 minutes or so. Season with more salt and pepper. Towards the end of the cooking time, melt the remaining butter in another frying pan and fry the eggs. Divide the hash between 2 plates, top with a fried egg each, and have lashings of brown sauce, or the sauce of your choice, at the ready.