'Film catering isn't great if you don't eat meat' | Natasia Demetriou talks about appearing on Big Zuu's Big Eats © UKTV

'Film catering isn't great if you don't eat meat'

Natasia Demetriou talks about appearing on Big Zuu's Big Eats

Why did you sign up for the show?

My brother [Jamie] is a big fan and he told me to do it. My brother has great taste so I do what he tells me to do. And honestly I think if you say no to someone who’s offering to cook you your dream meal from scratch, you have to be a bit mad. So of course I said yes.

Are you a foodie?

Oh my God. Yes. Of course. Who isn’t? Food is so much more than fuel. It is fuel, obviously, but it’s also just putting amazing taste sensations in your mouth. I grew up around good food and it’s always been a big part of my life. I’d actually say it’s more than even a way of life, it’s a religion.

What was the food like for you growing up?

My dad was a chef but actually my mum used to do most of the cooking because my dad was always on his way out to do a night shift. So it was more grilled waffles and that sort of thing! Typical 1980s food.

And he’d bring leftovers home from the restaurant. Oh, it was disgusting. Half-eaten things wrapped in clingfilm – so gross. I didn’t eat it, obviously!

But he did make great food when he was around.

What did he cook?

He’s Greek so it was a lot of meat and a lot of potatoes. I don’t actually eat meat now but I love all the bits that go with it – all the little Greek salads, and veggie moussaka, and lentil salads, and all the different potatoes that they cook lots of different ways.

Did George Michael work at your dad’s restaurant?

Haha! No, but my dad used to pretend he did. I always believed him and then years later George Michael was on TV and I said something about him being Dad’s pot-washer and my mum was like, ‘What? Who told you that?’ So, no, he wasn’t. It was just my dad’s little idea of a joke.

What sort of food do you eat at work – is it all posh dinners at events and award ceremonies, or grabbing food on the go?

It’s much more the latter. I’ve only ever been to two award ceremonies and neither of them had food. So it’s more a case of grabbing stuff on the go, or set catering which is often not great if you don’t eat meat. Sometimes they’ll just go, ‘So today’s vegetarian option is grilled cheese’ and you’re like ‘Urgh, really?’

Do you cook? What would you make me if I was coming for dinner?

I love cooking. I’m a good cook. I’d make you a lovely home-made cherry tomato sauce and spaghetti followed by a creme brûlée. Simple, classic, but delicious.

Was Zuu happy to cook vegetarian food for you?

Yeah, he was totally fine with it. He actually said eating meat has been giving him a bad stomach recently so he was really up for trying some vegetarian recipes and cutting out the meat. He made me these amuse bouche which were – wait for it – very amusing. It was amazing.

You presented The Big Flower Fight with Vic Reeves. Has it inspired you to grow your own food?

Yes! I’m not very good and I’ve killed a lot of my balcony plants but God loves a trier so I’m determined to persist.

I’ve got an allotment now and I’m digging away and turning over the soil and planting stuff. It’s looking all brown and earthy and I think that’s kind of how it’s meant to look at this stage! [This interview took place in spring] I’m looking forward to the summer and seeing some shoots and maybe even having something edible to take home.

What’s your dream meal?

Okay I’ve thought about this a lot, and it’s quite a long list. Ready? I’d have minestrone soup to start, with some picky salads on the side, then two pasta dishes – cacio e pepe, and tomato sauce. Then I’d have potatoes cooked lots of different ways - bombay, aloo, roast – with some carrots. And to finish, some petit fours, a mixture of chocolate, lemony and creamy ones. Macaroni cheese used to get involved too but I know I need to cut it down a bit so we’ll stick with the rest.

And to drink?

A penicillin cocktail made with bourbon.

  • Natasia Demetriou’s episode of Big Zuu’s Big Eats is on Dave at 10pm on Monday, or on UKTV Play now.

Published: 3 Aug 2021

What do you think?

Live comedy picks

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.