A budding chef at Burton and South Derbyshire College has cooked her way to the final of the Kikkoman Student Chef Competition.
Students from colleges across the country were challenged with developing an innovative dish using Kikkoman soy sauce as an integral ingredient, excluding classic oriental dishes.
Catering learner, Michelle Moore, made it to the final after the photos and descriptions of her banana tarte tatin with salted caramel were chosen by Michelin starred chef, Simon Hulstone. Five student chefs have been selected to take part in the cook-off final, set to take place on Tuesday 6th May at Westminster Kingsway College.
The final will bring the best college students from around the country together to battle it out for the title of Kikkoman Student Chef of the Year, along with the first prize of a £250 equipment voucher and a week’s work experience at The Elephant Restaurant with Simon Hulstone.
During the final, students will be asked to prepare their dishes with 30 minutes preparation time and 1-hour cooking time. Judges will be looking at taste, skills and ‘Mis en Place’ when selecting the overall winners.
Michelle commented: “I really enjoy trying different flavours together that shouldn’t work but do, so using soy sauce in a pudding was a fun challenge. I was so excited when I found out I’d been selected as a finalist for the competition; I didn’t think I would get through. It’s the first competition I’ve entered and getting to the final has given me a real confidence boost.
“Before I started the course, I thought I would go back into quantity catering but the course has given me the chance to be more creative and I would like to work in a restaurant in the future. I love being creative in the kitchen and coming up with new ideas!”
Sean Sleigh, Catering Lecturer at Burton and South Derbyshire College said: “Michelle produced dishes that were of a very high quality and we’re extremely excited that she has been selected to compete in the national final. Taking part in competitions is a great way for learners to develop their skills and techniques and gain experience in working under pressure. We wish Michelle all the best for the final in May!”