MasterChef: The Professionals semi-finalist Malin de Silva has been named head chef at Paradise in London's Soho.
Born in Sri Lanka, De Silva (pictured above right) started out in the jewellery trade before moving to the UK and working as senior chef de partie at the Latymer restaurant at Pennyhill Park in Surrey and as assistant chef at Marc Wilkinson's Fraiche in Oxton.
He appeared on the 2019 series of BBC's MasterChef: The Professionals and made it through to the semi-finals.
Paradise focuses on Sri Lankan cuisine and was opened by restaurateur Dom Fernando in the former Spuntino site in Soho in 2019. It won a Bib Gourmand in the 2021 edition of the Michelin Guide Great Britain and Ireland.
De Silva has designed a new menu with dishes including breadfruit patty empanadas with pineapple ketchup; grilled Ceylonese spiced langoustines with mango chutney, green papaya and palm heart; and grilled eight spiced Mangalitza pork belly skewers with southern tamarind and crackling.
"I want to bring both Dom's and my family influences to the fore - using contemporary techniques that I've honed over the last ten years," said De Silva.
"British produce and Sri Lankan spices will speak for themselves - and we'll take inspiration from cooking on fire at home in Hikkaduwa and put this at the centre of everything we do."