The College of West Anglia

Students Excel in the Kitchen at Rotary Club Final

On the 22nd January students from local schools and the college participated in the annual Rotary Young Chef local finals.

The finals took place at the college’s Novus restaurant and saw students from Terrington St. Clements, Smithdon, Marshland and Springwood high schools and the college compete against each other to go forward to the District heat of the competition.

The competitors were challenged to plan two dishes and buy the ingredients with a maximum spend of £10 per person. Students had to buy, prepare, cook and serve their dishes in under two hours.

Students presented their dishes to Peter Senior and Nick Parker, chef at The Lodge in Old Hunstanton. Both of whom have many years of experience within the industry. Students were given marks of ten on a variety of different of different categories including taste, texture and appearance.

John Thorpe, organiser of the event and member of the King’s Lynn Trinity Rotary Club said: ‘We’ve been holding this event for many years. We do a lot of work with schools and our aim is to encourage young people to learn new skills and build their confidence. This year we have had an outstanding collection of inventive dishes and the kids should be extremely proud of what they’ve achieved.’

All participants in the competition with Rotarian members, John Thorpe and president, John Hardy and judges and judges Peter Senior and Nick Parker.

First place was awarded to Tom Arnold from Terrington who served up a delicious prawn tagliatelle, second place was given to Matthew Bocking also from Terrington, Fred Hargreaves from Smithdon took third place. Each student received a certificate from John Thorpe and John Hardy from the Rotary Club for taking part. All three winners will move on to the district final taking place on the 2nd February at the college’s Novus restaurant.

Daisey Buzzard from Marshland High School who won dish of the day with her lemon drizzle cake, said: ‘I really enjoyed taking part today, I am studying food and nutrition and I’m also contemplating a career in the industry.’

From L to R: Fred Hargreaves (3rd place), Tom Arnold (1st place) and Matthew Bocking (2nd place).

Each student received a certificate for taking part and the three winners will move on to the District Final taking place on the 2nd February at the college’s Novus restaurant.

Nicky Thompson, Food & Nutrition teacher at Springwood High School, said: “The competition gives the pupils the confidence to plan and cook creative dishes served up to restaurant standard. The boys who made it to the finals at the College of West Anglia had the added bonus of working in a professional catering kitchen. It was an amazing experience for them and one which will help them enormously with their final practical exam.”