The heat is on for young Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar chefs

THE heat was on in the kitchen as five students battled it out in an ultimate bid to be crowned one of the country’s top young cooks.

Monk’s Walk School in WGC played host to a heat of Young Chef, a national competition organised by Rotary clubs across the country.

The first round had involved competitors submitting a menu they would like to cook.

Judges selected five to take part in a cook-off at the school last Saturday.

With a budget of just �10 – the ingredients being paid for by Waitrose – the youngsters had to cook a two-course meal for two, within a two-hour time limit.

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Their dishes were then served up to the judging panel: Choon Teoh, owner of the Hakalok restaurant at Shoplands, WGC, Jenny Chilton from WGC’s Waitrose store, and David Aitken, head chef at the Waggoners restaurant in Ayot Green.

A Rotary spokesman told the Welwyn Hatfield Times the morning was “intense but very enjoyable”.

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He said: “The competitors all performed excellently and they were judged not just on the dishes they produced but also their organisation, hygiene and understanding of the processes they used.

“The standard of the food produced was excellent.

“The audience, who had the opportunity to sample the dishes, were full of admiration for all the competitors and complimentary about the taste and presentation of the entries.”

The winner was 12-year-old Ellie Lovelock.

The Sir Frederic Osborn School student cooked coq au vin followed by lime and raspberry cheesecake with a fresh raspberry coulis. She will move forward to the district final at the end of this month.

Second place went to fellow Sir Fred’s pupil Ellis Giddens, 13, with Lee Festa, a 15-year-old student of Mount Grace School in Potters Bar, awarded third.

Ryan Harden and David Bentley were the other two finalists.

The heat was organised by members of WGC Rotary Club and hosted by food technology staff at Monk’s Walk on behalf of Mid Herts Rotary – the new joint youth activities committee of the four local Rotary clubs – WGC, Hatfield, Potters Bar and Brookmans Park.

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