Young chefs step up to the plate with an award winner

Top cooks: George Hunt, Ruari Catani-Brown, Charlotte Fairhall and Megan Newsham EMN-140703-074428001
Top cooks: George Hunt, Ruari Catani-Brown, Charlotte Fairhall and Megan Newsham EMN-140703-074428001

Four budding young chefs from Osgodby School have cooked up a treat to win a county-wide schools cookery competition.

The team from Osgodby - George Hunt, Ruari Catani-Brown, Charlotte Fairhall and Megan Newsham - were one of three schools who made it though to the final of the competition, organised by Lincolnshire County Council.

On the day, they had to cook a main course and pudding for panel of three judges, which included Masterchef finalist Eamonn Hunt.

And it was the Osgodby meal, together with their presentation on Fairtrade and locally sourced products, that saw them take the title.

“At first I was speechless,” said Ruari Catani-Brown who devised the menu.

“I didn’t think we had won and then they told us to collect the trophy - it was amazing.”

Each of the winning team was given an iPod shuffle and the school received a £50 voucher from competition sponsors Lincolnshire Co-op.

The runners-up also received vouchers from Lincolnshire Co-op for their school, to the value of £25.

The competition was open to all year five and six pupils across the county, who were challenged to design and cook a main course and dessert using Fairtrade and locally sourced ingredients.

“It’s a great way to encourage children to enjoy cooking and eating healthily,” said Denise Hornsey, Lincolnshire County Council’s Children’s Health Team Programme Officer.

Just like mama makes.....

Ruari Catani-Brown’s award winning menu of chicken and spinach risotto, followed by apple crumble, was inspired by his Italian mum.

“My mum cooks it a lot,it is a recipe she got from her family,” said Ruari.

“When I was thinking of my menu, I didn’t want to be too adventurous.

“I thought of what I liked and what I thought other people might like.”

The recipe had to be adjusted slightly; the team used Lincolnshire Poacher Cheese in the risotto, rather than the traditional cheese.

They also made use of the school’s own orchard when it came to the apple crumble.

“On the day, George and I made the risotto and Charlotte and Megan did the apple crumble.

“I had been practising over the past weeks and it all went well on the day.

“The judges also seemed to like our presentation; we didn’t use a script, it all just came from the heart.”

And it seems Ruari’s heart may now be fixed on cooking up some more culinary delights.

“I wasn’t much of a cook before this competition, I could just do the basics, but now I know that if I practise I can do more.”