Talented young chefs cook up a storm in contest

Back, from left: Iona Brooks, Iain Taylor and Florence Mills. Front, from left: Jazmine Brown, Calum Pritchard, Hannah Taylor and Tashi Dropchinski.
Back, from left: Iona Brooks, Iain Taylor and Florence Mills. Front, from left: Jazmine Brown, Calum Pritchard, Hannah Taylor and Tashi Dropchinski.

Scrumptious dishes were on the menu as talented amateur cooks went head-to-head in an annual culinary contest.

Students from Alnwick’s Duchess’s Community High School battled it out in Alnwick Rotary Club’s Young Chef Competition last week.

Eight pupils from Year 9 and 10 were asked to produce two courses, with a limited budget, in two hours.

And the pupils certainly proved that they could stand the heat in the kitchen, as they created some delightful dishes to dazzle the judges.

The winner was Hannah Taylor, who made Craster smoked-kipper kedgeree with spinach, kale, brown rice and eggs, followed by Chain Bridge honey and pistachio cake with low-fat yoghurt and home-grown berries.

The runner-up was Calum Pritchard, whose offering was fruit and garlic curried chicken with brown rice, followed by lemon cream cheesecake.

Only one point separated the pair, who both go through to the Rotary District Competition later in the year.

In third place was George Cockayne (who could not stay for the picture above), who produced a fillet of beef served on top of mini Yorkshire puddings with a creamed horseradish sauce and seasonal garnish, followed by fresh-filleted salmon en papillote, with a lime and butter sauce served with new potatoes and roasted peppers.

The judges were Barbara Reid and Marion Long, from Alnwick Rotary, and Paul Short, of Paul’s Private Dining, who offered a cookery workshop as a prize. Alnwick Rotary has thanked Paul and the school for their support.