Food student cooks up national award

Award winning food student Rutina Samuel Credit: Wisbech Grammar School

A food student at Wisbech Grammar School with a taste for her ancestral homeland has taken the top prize in a national competition organised by The Guild of Food Writers.

Fourteen year old Rutina Samuel who lives in Downham Market and is following the school's food short course, was chosen as the winner of the annual 'Write it' young food writer of the year contest for her feature on 'Little Ethiopia', in which she savours the flavours of her father's home country in Africa.

In the 750-word submission for the competition, which is open to writers aged up to 18 years old, she says that she loves the music of the dark continent, but that the most important cultural treasure of that land is its food.

Before moving to England Rutina lived in Zimbabwe and she used to travel with her father into South Africa and try the Ethiopian cuisine in the restaurants there.

She developed a taste for 'injera', a spongy sourdough flatbread and the spicy curries called 'wats' that are served with it - and she learnt how to eat the food in the traditional way without using any utensils.