New College Stamford recently welcomed 5 talented hopefuls, aged between 12 and 16, who took up the challenge to showcase their fantastic cooking skills and battled it out to win their Local Final gaining a place in the Regional Final and getting one step closer to the National Final on 23 March 2015. 

New College Stamford Hosts Future Chef Cookery Competition

New College Stamford Hosts Future Chef Cookery Competition

Samantha Carter from Catmose College reignedsupreme, impressing the judges with her winning menu of pan fried sea bass with pesto ravioli, followed by sticky date and toffee pudding with caramelised bananas.

Head Judge Phil Matthews said “Having judged this competition for many years, the standards were exceptionally high and the dishes were very tasty.’’

Springboard’s FutureChef is a nationwide culinary initiative which helps young people aged 12-16 cook their way through a series of challenges, providing invaluable lessons and insight into the culinary industry.

Winner Samantha said “I can’t believe I won, and I am looking forward to the next round”. Samantha will be mentored by professional chef Shaun Mason, a former New College Stamford Student who has previously worked with Rick Stein and catered for the royal family.


Springboard’s Programmes Manager Sophie said “The Springboard FutureChef initiative is the biggest and most successful national school cooking programme. It inspires students to learn to cook, introduces them and their schools to well respected industry chefs, offers the opportunity to win fantastic prizes and gain anything from a valuable life skill to an informed career path into the UK’s leisure and hospitality industry.”

Springboard’s FutureChef, now in its 15th year, was developed as the result of research findings into young people’s perception of the industry. The research revealed that young people admire higher profile and celebrity chefs, yet, surprisingly few generally consider a career as a chef! To address this, Springboard’s FutureChef local finals are judged by industry chefs with the winner paired up with a local industry chef mentor, to work on their dishes for the Regional Final. A range of employers are involved in the initiative and dedicated to inspiring young talent into the industry.

The 2015 initiative will culminate on the 23 March 2015, with the National Final taking place at Westminster Kingsway College in London.

Words and images courtesy of Catmose College

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