Students at the three secondary schools in Christchurch have cooked to the top of their ability to win prizes in competitions organised by Christchurch Food Festival Education Trust and sponsored by Christchurch Rotary.
The students, all in Year 10 at The Grange School, Highcliffe School and Twynham School, each had to produce a main course and dessert which were then judged by TV Chef Lesley Waters, President of Christchurch Food & Wine Festival Mary Reader and Christchurch Rotary President Colette Neaum.
Also on the judging panel were the local chefs who had launched the competition in each of the schools – Ian Hewitt at The Grange, Kevin Brown from The Lord Bute at Highcliffe and Colin Nash from The Three Tuns at Twynham.
The winning students at each school were: The Grange School – Ryan Jennings with pork chow mein and lemon shortbread with cream.
Highcliffe School – Sophia Greenacre with basa fillet, spicy kale and rice and roasted poached citrus pears.
Twynham School – Jake St. John with pan fried venison with blackberries,saute potatoes and mixed veg and chocolate mousse with shortbread.
Jake was also chosen as the overall winner from all three schools.
Mary Reader, who is also a trustee of the Food Festival Education Trust, said: “As always with these competitions, the students really worked hard to come up with some excellent recipes. It was a very difficult job to decide on the winners as all of them had produced some delicious dishes. “This competition has been a stepping stone in the past for many students to go on and have very successful careers in the catering industry so I hope some of this year’s students will think of it as an option when they leave school.
“I’m very grateful to Lesley Waters for giving up time from her busy schedule at her cookery school, to Christchurch Rotary for sponsoring the competition again and to the local chefs who helped to inspire the students.”