7 Secret Recipes: Cook Like a Michelin-Starred Chef at Home

From the Caribbean Sea to the sexy shores of South America to the snow-capped peaks of Switzerland, we bring the world to you via our travels.

We love to cook. And we love sharing recipes, especially secret recipes from top chefs, who also just so happen to cook at some of the best hotels in the world, for some of the most discerning guests in the world.

We recently discovered that one much-lauded hotel group, Small Luxury Hotels of the World, had put together a cookbook, a collection of more than 200 recipes from more than 500 of its properties, in 80 countries. Since then Small Luxury Hotels of the World has just launched its follow up: The Small Luxury Cookbook: First Courses. So even if you’ve got the main dish on the menu set, you now have access to some of the world’s most appetizing, well, appetizers! First Courses includes everything from classic guacamole to shared plates of dips, chicken and more.

“The new edition of The Small Luxury Cookbook features a collection of appetizing recipes from over 150 of these hotels designed to inspire people to cook, and to travel. Moreover, it provides a platform for lesser known ingredients and local methods, as well as family heirlooms to be shared with the world:”

 Partridge Escabeche – created by Chef Jose Julio Vintem from an old recipe handwritten by the grandmother of the current owner of Sao Lourenco do Barrocal in Portugal.

 Charcoal Roasted Sea Cicada – Chef Ramon Ramos takes advantage the Samana Peninsula in Dominican Republic being one of the few places the sea cicada can be found to put it on the menu at The Bistro at Sublime Samana Hotel & Residences.

 Smoked Lake Geneva Fera – Chef Nicolas Raynal at Chateau d’Ouchy in Switzerland helpfully suggests where locally to buy fera, a relative of the salmon and native to the lake.

 Raw Moreton Bug – Actually not as unusual as it sounds, a Moreton Bay Bug is a type of lobster, which Halycon House in Australia’s Chef Ben Devlin smokes over paper bark.

 Stone-grilled Scallop Lollipops – Executive Chef Bob Wu of Tea 5 at LN Hotel Five in

Guangzhou, China, cooks scallops on hot stones, a traditional Cantonese method.

But these aren’t just any old recipes, mind you. More than 90 of the SLH properties have restaurants that carry Michelin stars and a variety of global recognition. Trust us, we’ve had the privilege of tasting a few. From the Caribbean Sea to the sexy shores of South America to the snow-capped peaks of Switzerland, we’ve picked our favourite seven recipes for you to try at home.

Filip Boyen, CEO for SLH and former chef says: “The beauty of the Small Luxury Cookbook is that just like our hotels it offers something for everyone, whether they are an occasional, an aspiring or a proficient chef, while serving as a reminder that small, independent hotels also offer standout culinary offerings that can significantly add to the experience of staying there.” All recipes come with step-by-step instructions, as well as alternative suggestions for any hard to source ingredients, to allow people to recreate the dishes at home.

Cook like a chef in your own kitchen? Why not.

Scroll through to get a taste of the Small Luxury Cookbook: First Courses, and get cooking!


The Small Luxury Cookbook: First Courses is available to purchase at participating SLH hotels, or at www.slhcookbook.com. Directories are available at all SLH member hotels. For more information or to make a reservation visit www.slh.com.



The Place: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

The Hotel: Casas del XVI

The Dish: Caprese salad

Serves 2


140g red salad tomato

225g mango

225g fresh mozzarella cheese

120ml balsamic reduction


basil pesto

140g basil

50g pine nuts

5 cloves garlic

120g parmesan cheese

25g salt

120ml olive oil

Pulse the dry pesto ingredients in a food processor (keep two basil leaves for decoration) until they are coarsely chopped. Add the olive oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth.

Slice the tomato into thin discs. Slice the mango and cheese into rounds to match the tomato slices: keep the mango trimmings for garnish. Arrange alternate slices of tomato, mango and mozzarella cheese decoratively on a serving plate with pesto underneath.

Decorate with a fresh basil leaf and mango trimmings, with a splash of an exquisite balsamic reduction.


The Place: Oia, Santorini, Greece

The Hotel: Canaves Oia Suites

The Dish: Trilogy of Greek dips: Taramosalata, melitzanosalata, fava beans puree

Sommelier tip: A great ‘meze’ to enjoy with ouzo or a dry and fruity white wine.

Serves 4



50g fish roe

250g potatoes

150ml olive oil


Peel and boil the potatoes. Blend with the fish roe and olive oil in a processor until smooth and creamy.



5 medium aubergines

50g walnuts, crushed

50g flat leaf parsley, chopped

30ml olive oil


Grill the aubergines, turning occasionally until the skin begins to blacken and char all around. Leave to cool, then remove the skin and dice the flesh into small pieces. Mix the aubergine in a bowl with the walnuts, parsley, and oil. Keep stirring until the ingredients are fully combined.


Fava bean purée

100g fava beans

1 carrot, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

100ml olive oil

30-50ml fresh lemon juice


Pan-fry the fava beans with the carrot and onion. Once they are done, put them in a blender with 250ml of water and mix until they become a smooth cream. Add the fresh lemon juice, together with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve in individual bowls with pitta or delicious oven baked bread.

The Place: Buenos Aires, Argentina

The Hotel: Piano Lounge Restaurant at 1828 Smart Hotel

The Dish: Smoked salmon with guacamole and nachos

Chef Mariel Fazio’s tip: We serve using a wooden plank, but you can find your own way to present this dish attractively.


Per serving

8 slices smoked salmon

1 small beet, roasted & peeled

poppy seeds



1 avocado, approx 200g

1 small red onion

1 small tomato

1/2tsp lemon juice

bean sprouts for garnish

passionfruit sauce

1/2 passion fruit, peeled

2tsp honey

sautéed tomatoes

6 cherry tomatoes

5 leaves basil

mint leaves

50g nachos

Place the slices of smoked salmon in a crescent on the plate, sprinkled with poppy seeds. Using a peeler cut the beet into a flower and place in the bow of the crescent.

For the guacamole, peel and mash the avocado. Peel, deseed, and cut the tomato into a fine dice. Chop half the red onion to the same size dice. Mix the ingredients well, then add the lemon juice and season with salt and black pepper. Fill a round mould with the mixture and unmould the guacamole beside the smoked salmon. Decorate with bean sprouts.

Mash the passion fruit and mix with the honey and a teaspoon of warm water. Stir well and drizzle around the plate.

Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a frying pan. Add the cherry tomatoes and turn them until they are softened and shiny. Blend the basil leaves with a dash of olive oil. Place them on the wood plank with the basil and with fresh mint leaves on the side. Fill a small bowl with nachos and place it alongside the tomatoes.

Finish with thin slices of the remaining red onion.

The Place: Mexico City, Mexico

The Hotel: The roof Garden at STARA San Angel Inn

The Dish: Duck tacos with pineapple chutney and honey of agave

The Chef: Adriana Martinez

Serves 2

Sommelier tip: Serve with a good red shiraz or sparkling cava wine.


2 duck legs with thigh

1 medium carrot

1 stalk celery

1/2 leek

1/2 medium white onion

1 clove garlic, sliced

2 bay leaves

5g butter in small cubes

¼tsp pepper

1tsp salt

75ml olive oil

250g pineapple, in small cubes

75ml cava or apple wine vinegar

1/3 red pepper

2 cloves

75ml honey or agave syrup

6 wheat flour tortillas


Cut the carrot, celery, leek and onion into medium cubes. Place them in a deep baking dish together with the garlic, bay leaves, butter, duck (without removing the skin), olive oil and seasoning. Bake at 120ºC for about 3 hours or until the skin is golden brown and the meat is easily removed from the bone.

Bring the pineapple (in small cubes) to the boil in a saucepan with the vinegar, pepper, cloves, and honey or syrup. Simmer until it reaches a good marmalade consistency, then take off the heat and reserve.

Once the duck is ready, shred the flesh from the bone. Heat the tortillas and make tacos with duck confit and pineapple chutney.


The Place: Pangkor Laut, Malaysia

The Hotel: Pangkor Laut Resort

The Dish: Chinese lime chicken

Chef Uncle Lim’s tip: Serve with hot, steamed jasmine rice

Serves 6


1.2kg boneless chicken legs

180g cornflour

30g sesame seeds

600ml cooking oil

100ml lime juice

(preferably calamansi)

130g plum sauce

120g chilli sauce


Slice the chicken leg meat. Coat with cornflour and sesame seeds, then deep fry the pieces until golden in colour and crispy in texture (approximately 4 minutes).

Heat the oil in a wok, pour in the lime juice, plum and chilli sauces, then add the crispy chicken. Toss together in the pan for about 20 seconds until all the pieces are coated.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.


The Place: Malindi, Kenya

The Hotel: Diamonds Dream of Africa

The Dish: Sweet potato with Kenyan salsa and avocado

The Chef: Johnson Salau


Per serving

1 medium sweet potato



1 ripe avocado, roughly chopped

1 tomato

peeled, deseeded & diced

1 red chilli, finely chopped

1 medium red onion,

diced & soaked in warm water

handful of chopped coriander

juice of 1/2 a lime



juice of 1 lime

half a bunch coriander, chopped

100ml olive oil


Fill a pan with enough cold water to just cover the sweet potato. Remove the sweet potato and add a dash of salt. Bring the water to the boil and return the sweet potato to the pan. Cover the pan and cook for 10-12 minutes until tender.

Remove the cooked sweet potato from the water, mash, and mould into a patty. Grill the patty on both sides until the surface is crisp and browned.

Meanwhile mix together the avocado, tomato, chilli, onion, coriander, lime juice, and a dash of olive oil plus salt and pepper to taste.

Mix the lime juice and coriander plus salt and pepper to taste. Slowly add in the olive oil, whisking to make the vinaigrette.

Serve the salsa on top of the grilled sweet potato and drizzle with the lime and coriander vinaigrette.


The Place: Gstaad, Switzerland

The Hotel: Le Grand Bellevue

The Dish: Fish ‘n’ chips: beer-battered cod with fries, coleslaw and tartare sauce

Chef Urs Gschwend’s tip: Simple to prepare but with an impressive outcome!


Serves 2


280g cod fillet

400g french fries

400ml high oleic sunflower oil for frying


Beer batter

78g wheat flour

78ml pale beer

12ml sunflower oil

1 egg white



Juice of 1 lemon

Worcestershire sauce

30g type ‘550’ flour



20g carrots

60g white cabbage

10g shallots

30g mayonnaise

2g sugar


Tartare sauce

20g pickled cucumbers

20g capers

50g mayonnaise


Blend the flour and beer for the batter with the sunflower oil in a processor until smooth. Beat the egg white with a teaspoon of salt until stiff, then gently fold into the batter.

Skin and cut the cod fillet into six even pieces. Mix the lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce with a little salt and marinate the fish before coating them in the flour and pulling them through the prepared beer batter. Heat the sunflower oil to 170°C degrees and deep fry the cod fish pieces until golden brown.

For the coleslaw, peel the carrots and cut both them and the cabbage into fine slices. Peel the shallots and cut into small even cubes. Mix the vegetables with the mayonnaise and season with salt and pepper.

For the tartare sauce finely chop the pickled cucumber and capers and mix with the mayonnaise and sugar.

Serve the coleslaw and tartare sauce in separate small bowls and garnish with lemon. For an extra twist, serve the cod and fries in newspaper.