15th March 2016

Search is on for Taste of Grampian Aspiring Young Chef 2016

The next generation of budding chefs is being offered the chance to enter the Scotch Beef Aspiring Young Chef competition – part of the Taste of Grampian annual food festival’s programme.   The award, which is sponsored by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and North East Scotland College, is aimed at encouraging young people to consider a culinary career and to kindle a real passion for top quality local produce among chefs of the future.   Entries are welcome from working commis chefs, college pupils and school pupils aged 14-18.  The final will take place at the Taste of Grampian festival on Saturday 4th June 2016 and will be judged by award-winning cook and food writer, Lady Claire Macdonald.   This year’s competitors - shortlisted from written applications by an independent judging panel - will don their aprons to create a two course menu comprising of a main course and dessert, using as much local produce as possible. Those shortlisted will prepare and cook their bespoke recipes in the run-up to the event at the North East Scotland College City Campus on Saturday 23rd April 2016 and the two chosen finalists will then battle it out at a live cook-off at the festival to determine the winner.   The gold award winner will receive a £200 voucher for kitchen equipment; and a signed cook book. The silver award winner will receive a £100 voucher with the shortlist receiving a £50 voucher.   John Gregor, Chairman of Taste of Grampian and Executive Director at the ANM Group, said: “This competition is a fantastic platform for ambitious young people, who are just starting off in their careers, to showcase their talent at Taste of Grampian - the biggest food and drink festival in the North East of Scotland.   Jim McLaren, Chairman of Quality Meat Scotland, said the initiative was an excellent opportunity to remind future chefs and others about all that sets quality assured beef, lamb and pork from Scotland apart.   “The quality of Scotch Beef PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork is recognised around the globe, with overseas consumers greatly valuing the natural production methods, quality assurance and animal welfare behind these brands.    “It is important that consumers at home also appreciate and understand the high standards of production behind the first class meat produced in Scotland,” said Mr McLaren.   The competition is now in its third year and is free to enter; the deadline for written applications is Friday 7th April 2016.  Full details on how to apply are available on the Taste of Grampian website at www.tasteofgrampian.co.uk.  

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