<div style="display:inline;"> <img height="1" width="1" style="border-style:none;" alt="" src="//googleads.g.doubleclick.net/pagead/viewthroughconversion/1028731116/?value=0&amp;guid=ON&amp;script=0">
CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Lancashire Life today click here

Behind the scenes at Paul’s Kitchen cookery school in Barrowford

PUBLISHED: 00:00 13 February 2016 | UPDATED: 20:46 10 June 2016

Paul Dickson

Paul Dickson

Archant

Chef Paul Dickson has gone from cooking for royalty and Hollywood stars to helping novice cooks turn out food fit for a Queen.

Preparing ingredients Preparing ingredients

Paul Dickson’s passion for cooking is easy to see. Watching him whirl around his kitchen in Barrowford, he chatters excitedly while chopping up a huge batch of herbs and vegetables for a Cambodian dish he is preparing.

It is the 46-year-old’s passion for his craft that has driven him on as a chef over the past three decades.

Paul, originally form the North East, moved to London aged just 17 in pursuit of becoming a chef. He had shown promise in cookery lessons at high school and a teacher encouraged him to nurture his talents.

‘This was at a time when boys weren’t supposed to be good at cookery,’ he remembered. ‘But it just came very naturally to me and I was better than all of the girls. That teacher really pushed me to get better and to try at becoming a chef.’

Paul Dickson at the cooking hob Paul Dickson at the cooking hob

His first job was at a Holiday Inn before making the big jump to Le Meridien Piccadilly. In the capital Paul worked for some of its top restaurants and as executive chef for Yo Sushi as well as leading corporate banking kitchens including a stint as executive chef for JP Morgan where he led a kitchen of 18 people.

During this time he cooked for a host of internationally renowned actors including Leonardo DiCaprio at the private after party of the film The Beach, singer Robbie Williams and the Queen as well as a host of leading financiers and dignitaries from across the globe.

‘Going into corporate fine dining was absolutely amazing, said Paul, who has also worked as a DJ. ‘Working for top directors and important clients was important in that world. It was the kind of thing that could help make and break deals.

‘I could also be very creative and I didn’t have strict budgets. It was all about being able to impress clients and turn out incredible food. We had the staff to do it and it was something I really loved. I had amazing energy levels when I was younger and I thrived.’

Adding finishing touches Adding finishing touches

It was having children Spike and Stella, now 15 and 13, with Burnley-born wife, Julie, a freelance fashion stylist, that prompted a move to Lancashire eight years ago. He has turned part of his home, one of three converted from the Victorian former St Thomas’s Primary School in the village, into his Paul’s Kitchen boutique cookery school.

All Paul’s courses take place in his kitchen where he teaches everyone from complete beginners to budding Jamie Olivers. There is not a sign of stainless steel and not a hint of a commercial kitchen. Paul has chosen each item carefully, from the beautiful wooden workbenches to the gadgetry he loves to collect. Class sizes are a maximum of five.

He loves teaching people new skills but it is also important that it is a social event. He holds courses on everything from making the perfect macaroons and baking to learning how to cook the perfect steak and Middle Eastern cuisine. He also tailors courses for specific eating plans including paleo diets, clean eating and general healthy eating and does children’s parties.

‘It’s really nice being in a home setting,’ he said. ‘It is a lovely thing being in this old village school teaching people new skills. I want people to come here and feel totally at home and enjoy themselves as well as learn something

‘I don’t feel like there is anything like this anywhere else in Lancashire, where they have the kind of set up I have. I feel very proud of that. Everybody can cook, some just need a helping hand. For others it’s brushing up skills or giving them more advanced ones. It’s a lot of fun.’

Paul, who is a Craft Guild of Chefs Master Craftsmen and was the youngest recipient at 23 of a prestigious Acorn Award, also hosts pop up dining events in his home as well as cooking events for CrossFit Pendle and private dining in people’s homes.

‘Food and gathering around a table to eat is a social thing, said Paul. ‘Sharing food sparks conversation and I think it’s something people enjoy doing. I love creating dishes where everyone can tuck into one big dish in the centre of the table and help themselves.

For more information visit www.pauls.kitchen.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Lancashire Life visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Lancashire Life staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Lancashire Life account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Food & Drink

Mon, 13:05

Take a look at some of the finest hampers available in the county.

Read more
Christmas
Monday, November 13, 2017

There is no challenge too small for cake maker Molly Robbins, writes Mairead Mahon

Read more
Sunday, November 12, 2017

It’s the home of the UK’s longest running vegetable box scheme and is showing no signs of slowing down. Mairead Mahon reports

Read more
Lancashire Food
Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Beat the Autumn chills with Soup and a Sandwich for just £7 all throughout November.

Read more
Monday, November 6, 2017

Throughout November The Top Lock will be serving up some delicious Vegan dishes for you to try!

Read more
Monday, November 6, 2017

Curry Club at The Top Lock - All throughout November!

Read more
Monday, November 6, 2017

Cheese & Wine Offer at The Butlers Arms, Pleasington - November 2017.

Read more
Monday, November 6, 2017

After the success of our Curry Week in October we were asked to bring it back...

Read more
Friday, November 3, 2017

The beautiful woodland John Collinson’s hens explore on Longridge Fell is what makes Bowland Forest Eggs taste so good. Emma Mayoh reports

Read more
Lancashire Food Bowland
Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The inaugural Taste Lancashire conference united the county’s food industry

Read more
Tuesday, October 31, 2017

A Saddleworth actor is relishing a new career as a restaurateur, as Emma Mayoh discovered

Read more
Oldham
Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Tom Parker and the team at The White Swan are taking flight, as Emma Mayoh discovered

Read more
Tuesday, October 31, 2017

You don’t have to go to Michelin starred venues for a fine dining experience. Foxholes Restaurant at Runshaw College is coming up rosettes, as Mairead Mahon discovered

Read more
Lancashire Restaurants
Thursday, October 26, 2017

Harvey Nichols doesn’t just do fashion darling, it does fab food too, as Janet Reeder discovers

Read more
Manchester Restaurants
 
Great British Holidays advert link

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Lancashire Life Application Link

Local Business Directory

Lancashire's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area



Property Search