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School chefs compete for top culinary title

Rachel Gresty from Gloucester; Lee Taylor from Coventry; Gail Carr from Stoke on Trent and Matthew Knight from Birmingham Credit: LACA School Chef of the Year 2020.

Four school chefs are preparing to battle it out for the regional title 'West Midlands School Chef of the Year 2020' next week (9th January 2020)

Under the scrutiny of a panel of judges, the chefs will have to prepare a two-course meal suitable for serving to 11-year-olds in primary or secondary schools.

They will have just 90 minutes to cook their meal at Brooksby Melton College in Melton Mowbray.

£1.30
is all the chefs are allowed to spend on a single meal

The winner from this regional heat will go on to represent the whole of the West Midlands, against nine other Regional Champions, in the National Final where the champion will receive a £1000 cash prize and the LACA 2020 School Chef of the Year trophy.

Second and third place winners will respectively receive cash prizes of £500 and £300.

LACA School Chef of the Year Competition organisers say that the aim is to show parents the high quality of school meals today and the contribution they not only make to the health and wellbeing of their children but also their physical and educational attainment.

“The impact that this has on the health and vitality of children and young people cannot be underestimated.

It underpins why all schools should provide quality, nutritious meals.

Our school catering teams are totally committed to the role they play in educating children and young people about how food and eating better can help them achieve more, both academically and physically.

LACA School Chef of the Year is a celebration of all that’s best about education catering. Good luck to all of our 2020 regional finalists”.

– LACA National Chair, Stephen Forster

Meet the West Midlands candidates:

Gail Carr Credit: LACA School Chef of the Year 2020.

Gail Carr, Orminston Horizon Academy, Stoke on Trent

Menu: Fish taco with lime slaw and roasted vegetables. (Mexican battered fish on top of lime slaw in a soft taco boat on a roast vegetable sea)

Cookie cheesecake sandwich. (A creamy cheesecake sandwiched between crispy chocolate cookies with a mixed berry dressing.)

Lee Taylor Credit: LACA School Chef of the Year Competition.

Lee Taylor, John Gulson Primary School, Coventry

Menu: A vegetarian inspired dish from Bangladesh for a life on the open seas. (Vegetarian chickpea and spinach curry in a chapati boat on a sea of red lentil dahl with a salad refresher.)

Deconstructed Keer with a twist. (Classic Keer from India with a burnt orange segment and flavoured custard tea.)

Matthew Knight Credit: LACA School Chef of the Year Competition.

Matthew Knight, Hillstone Primary School, Birmingham

Menu: Bostin Brummie Balti Bon Bons (Balti-seasoned bon bons with coconut rice, beetroot flatbread and cucumber & mint yogurt.)

A trifle bit Hillstone School favourites. (Jelly, chocolate concrete and custard with organic homegrown raspberries.)

Rachel Gresty Credit: LACA School Chef of the Year Competition.

Rachel Gresty, Tredworth Primary School, Gloucester

Menu: Vegetable chilli with garlic flatbread (Vegetable chilli with garlic flatbread and coriander rice.)

Pear Meringue Tart (Pastry case with raspberry, pear and Italian meringue.)

The winner of the LACA School Chef of the Year Competition will be announced at the National Final which is to be held on 5 March 2020.