Marathon-running chefs dish up the perfect meals for distance dining (non-subscriber preview)
There is no one more qualified to create meals for marathon runners than a chef who runs. So we recruited three famous chefs who have run the Flora London Marathon: Gordon Ramsey, Brian Turner and Michel Roux Jr, to develop recipes for meals leading up to, and following a 26.2-miler. Their task: to create a dish with the right balance of carbs, protein and fat to propel runners to the finish line and help them recover from their effort. Bon appetit!
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Race-morning breakfast - Perfect porridge
From one-time London Marathon runner Brian Turner
"This dish is perfect pre-race fuel," says celebrity chef Brian Turner, 61. "It has both slow- and quick-release carbohydrates for instant and measured energy."
When he ran the Flora London Marathon in 2000, not only was Turner a first-timer, but he had no previous experience of running whatsoever. "I was approached by an AIDS charity to run the marathon for them, but I had never done any running before. I had asthma as a kid, and never did much exercise. Taking on the marathon was a big challenge for me."
For Turner, the long and irregular hours of a chef made it tough to follow a proper training schedule. "I was only able to train two or three times a week for four months prior to the race." Moderating his eating habits also proved tricky. "It was impossible to radically change my diet while training, because I’m eating and tasting all day as part of my job," he says. "But I did cut out crisps and chips, and stopped eating a full post-service meal with my team at midnight every night!"
After the stress of his preparation, did Turner experience the magic of the London Marathon? "Definitely. I actually really enjoyed it on the day. You have thousands of people shouting for you, no matter who you are. And I was able to make a little dash for the line at the end so the feeling when I crossed it was fantastic." So, could he be tempted into a repeat performance? "With my age and my job, I don’t think I’ll be doing it again. It’s one of those things to cross off your list, and now I can say: "I’ve done that."
Porridge with honeyed bananas - (Serves two)
- 1/4 pt water, 1/4 pt milk
- 30g pinhead oatmeal (from Waitrose)
- 2 bananas
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp clear wild honey
- 1/2 tsp chopped pistachio nuts
Bring water and milk to the boil. Stir in the oatmeal. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, cut bananas into chunky slices, put into a hot frying pan and sprinkle with sugar to caramelise. When coloured, take off the heat and add honey. Put porridge into bowl and spoon bananas on top. Sprinkle with pistachios and serve.
Calories: 260 Fat: 3g Protein: 5.5g Carbs: 57g