Talented young chefs went head to head at Loughborough College this week, just one step away from the chance to win a national culinary crown.
Six hopefuls from schools in the region showcased their cooking skills at the Springboard FutureChef East Midlands 2017 regional final, with the hope of a place alongside winners from across the country in next month’s national final.
Under close scrutiny from a team of judges the competitors were given 90 minutes to cook a main course and dessert for two – all within a budget of £10.00 – before Holly Blockley was declared the winner.
Taking top marks for skills and techniques, creativity and presentation, menu choice and nutritional balance, composition, taste and flavour the 14 year old, from The Priory LSST, took first place with her menu of Crispy Chicken served with a butternut squash puree, asparagus wrapped pancetta and pecan crumb and a dessert of Chocolate and Strawberry Marquis served with a chocolate and nut crumbed cheesecake, cream and berry coulis.
Holly was presented with a commemorative plate and knife set and all competitors received a certificate and special FutureChef embroidered Chef’s jacket and apron.
Judges included Wayne Green from PSL, Steve Deakin from Gather and Gather, James Larkins from Compass and Loughborough College student Emily Bucknall, fresh from assisting the Craft Guild of Chefs GB team at the International Culinary Olympics,
“It was great to being doing the judging this time,” said Emily. “The standard was superb. The dishes looked amazing, they were all so colourful – and tasted incredible.
“If this is the calibre of chef coming through then things are looking very good for the catering profession.”
Loughborough College Lead for Hospitality and Catering and International Culinary Olympic medal winner Darren Creed added: “It is an honour to host this competition to have worked with Springboard for so many years, watching the competition go from strength to strength and to inspire so many young chefs.”
Competitors included: Thomas Simpson from Hinckley Academy; Erin Sinclair from Belper School and Sixth Form; Scarlett Scott from Arnold Hill Academy; Holly Blockley from The Priory LSST; Harvey Finch from Welland Park Academy and Lawrenze Denton from Northampton School for Boys.
The 2017 competition culminates on the 27th March, with the National Final.
Pictured: Holly Blockley at Loughborough College after winning the Springboard Future Chef East Midlands 2017 title with (left to right) Darren Creed, Steve Deakin, Emily Bucknall, James Larkins and Wayne Green
Elizabeth Udall, Communications Consultant:
Tel: 07515 852690