Martin Parsons is Head Chef at The Dartmoor Union Inn in the village of Holbeton near Plymouth. The inn has recently been re-opened by the team from South Sands Boutique Hotel and Beachside Restaurant in Salcombe.
What’s your background and how did you get to where you are now?
I have been cooking for 11 years. I was trained by Peter Gorton at the Horn of Plenty for four years before moving to The Seafood Restaurant at The Rose and Crown in Yealmpton to work with Head Chef Craig Stevens.
What type of food do you serve at The Dartmoor Union Inn?
Simple, fresh, honest and hearty. We currently have a lunch and dinner menu but we will be adding a bar menu and specials board in the not too distant future. Dishes include: southern fried rabbit legs with garlic mayonnaise; Devon ham with hand-cut chips and fried duck eggs; and steamed ginger sponge with caramelised apple toffee sauce and vanilla ice cream.
What is your favourite local ingredient and where is it sourced from?
We are spoilt for choice in Devon – we have such a good variety of ingredients to work with. Mackerel is one of my favourites. It is a lovely fish and we are very lucky that it can be caught locally.
What is your signature dish?
If I had to choose one dish then it would probably be Tempura soft shell crab with wasabi mayonnaise and passionfruit.
Where do you enjoy eating in Devon?
I love the Japanese food at Yukisan and The Thai House (both in Plymouth). You can’t beat Gidleigh Park for a special occasion.
Who is your Devon food hero?
Peter Gorton – I have my career to thank him for.