Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner. Facebook Messenger An icon of the facebook messenger app logo. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Facebook Messenger An icon of the Twitter app logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. WhatsApp Messenger An icon of the Whatsapp messenger app logo. Email An icon of an mail envelope. Copy link A decentered black square over a white square.

Desert Island Chef: Billy Boyter, chef owner of The Cellar in Anstruther

Post Thumbnail

Billy Boyter, chef owner of Michelin-starred restaurant The Cellar in Anstruther, tells Caroline Lindsay why he trusts to instinct when it comes to cooking

Q Desert island food?

A Scampi and tartare sauce, my favourite comfort food.

Q Favourite TV chef?

A I don’t really have a favourite TV chef to be honest. I don’t tend to watch many cooking programmes.

Q Favourite cook book?

A The French Laundry, one of the first proper cook books I bought. Ahead of its time when it was released and still as relevant now.

Q Favourite ingredient?

A Chocolate, I have a very sweet tooth.

Q Most hated ingredient?

A Liquorice, it actually makes me feel physically sick.

Q Perfect dinner guest?

A That’s a tough one. Probably my best mate Eadie. At least I know we’d have a good laugh.

Q Favourite kitchen gadgety?

A Thermomix, fantastic piece of equipment.

Q Favourite music to cook to?

A Tame Impala. Just during prep time.

Q Perfect menu?

A Local prawns (langoustines) to start, then probably a nice piece of aged beef for mains, anything chocolatey to finish.

Q Favourite country for food?

A Scotland of course, we have access to the best ingredients in the world.

Q Favourite chef, alive or dead?

A Sat Bains, he’s constantly evolving his food and restaurant. Never resting on his laurels.

Q Favourite culinary season?

A I probably change my mind on this yearly. This year it’s autumn. I love the transition from summer into your more homely rich flavours.

Q Salt or pepper?

A I could live without pepper but probably not salt. It’s used for so many things in a kitchen, not just seasoning.

Q Favourite herb?

A Lemon verbena or lemon thyme. I really love citrusy flavoured herbs.

Q Favourite spice?

A Ras el hanout, a spice mix from North Africa. Not spicy but full of flavour.

Q Favourite way to cook the humble potato?

A We have a potato dish on the menu at the moment where we slow cook them first, then finish them on a barbeque to go with an Arbroath smokie and crowdie mousse. I have to say they are pretty tasty.

Q Favourite go-to recipe if you’re in a hurry?

A Thai curry.

Q Favourite naughty nibble?

A Scampi fries. No one else seems to like them. Which is great because it means I don’t need to share.

Q Favourite health food?

A Mango smoothie.

Q Ideal picnic dish?

A Beef pastrami sandwich, with loads of cheese, pickles and mustard.

Q Ideal BBQ food?

A Slow-cooked short rib.

Q Are you critical of the food when you’re dining out?

A It depends. If I’m visiting a high-end restaurant, I might be critical. But I always keep my comments to myself. If I’m just out for a bite with the family I’m not overly so.

Q Do you tip in restaurants?

A Always.

Q Top tip for failsafe cooking?

A Nothing is failsafe when it comes to cooking. There are always other factors that can affect the outcome of what you’re doing. Experience and trusting your instinct are your best tools.

Q Worst cooking sin in your opinion?

A Buying mass produced (usually cheap) ingredients. Spend that little bit extra and buy from small artisan producers. Your customers will appreciate it. You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s lug.

Halibut with razor clams and orange oil


Serves 4

50g fine sea salt

25g caster sugar

4 x 120g portions halibut

1 lemon

250g unsalted butter

1 clove garlic

Sprig lemon thyme

Lemon peel

For the the dashi (traditional Japanese stock): 20g kombu (dried kelp)

1 litre spring water

20g katsuobushi (bonito)

4 bunches spring onions

For the orange oils: 1 orange

100ml olive oil

For the kalamansi emulsion: 130g unsalted butter

15g kalamansi (lemon juice can be used as a substitute)

4 egg yolks

12g black garlic paste

15g hot water

For the razor clams: 4 razor clams

200ml white wine

8 baby turnips

100g samphire


Mix the 50g salt and 25g sugar together to make the cure, and heavily season the halibut portions. Leave with the cure on for 10 minutes then wash off and pat dry.

To make the noisette for cooking the fish, peel 4 strips from the lemon and juice it. Add the 250g block of butter to a pot along with the crushed clove of garlic, sprig of lemon thyme and lemon peel. Stirring all the time heat until you see the solids in the butter start to turn nut brown. Remove from heat, allow to cool slightly and add the lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Once cool remove the garlic, thyme and lemon peel.

To make the dashi, which is a traditional Japanese stock, add the kombu to the spring water and gently bring the water to a simmer. Remove from the heat and add the bonito flakes. Leave to sit for around an hour then strain. Wash and dry the spring onions and lightly coat with oil. Place them on a tray and grill them until blackened. When cool chop the spring onions in quarters and add them to the dashi. Bring the dashi back to a simmer and leave to infuse for another hour, then strain.

To make the orange oils use a microplain or the fine side of a grater and zest the orange. Add the zest to the 100ml of olive oil and gently warm. The leave to infuse for an hour before straining.

For the kalamansi (an Asian citrus fruit) emulsion, melt the 130g butter in a pan and keep warm. Whisk together the kalamansi or lemon juice with the egg yolks, black garlic paste and the 15g of hot water over a bain-marie, while slowly pouring in the hot melted butter until the emulsion is thick and smooth. If too thick let it back slightly with warm water, Season. In the restaurant we put the emulsion into a gas-charged cream whipper, which gives you a mousse-like consistency.

Wash the razors and add them to a hot pot followed immediately by the white wine. Place a lid on top and steam until the shells open. Remove them from the pot and leave to cool. Cut the main tube from the shell and slice on the bias. Retain the clam stock for reheating the razors.

To make the dish heat a pan and cook the fish in the noisette basting continually until the fish is cooked. Warm the baby turnips in the dashi with the samphire and place on top and around the fish. Add on the razor clam slices and the kalamansi emulsion to the fish. And pour some of the dashi mixed with a little orange oil around the bowl.