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Could you be Berkshire's Best Young Chef?

Are you a budding young cook aged 12-19?

East Berkshire College and Berkshire Media Group have teamed up to launch this year's hottest cooking competition to find talented young cooks.

With exclusive prizes on offer and a chance to meet some of the UK’s top chefs, this competition is an opportunity to get your cooking skills noticed. We are inviting anyone aged 12-19 (inclusive) and living in Berkshire to create a delicious dish to ‘wow’ our panel of judges. No professional experience is necessary to enter - you just need to be passionate about food! Those who make it through to the final will take part in a live masterchef-style cook-off at Langley College, which will be judged by experts including Michelin-starred chefs from Tom Kerridge's Hand & Flowers in Marlow and award-winning pastry chef, Will Torrent.

This year there will be two age categories, 12-15 and 16-19 years old.

First prize

12-15 category:
  • Signed copies of Will Torrent's books including 'Afternoon Tea at Home' and some of the finest Belgian chocolate from Callebaut.
  • A behind-the-scenes tour of the prestigious Oakley Court Hotel, including a masterclass from the hotel’s Head Chef and a complimentary three course meal in the hotel’s award-winning restaurant with your parents.
  • Baking accessories (worth over £75) thanks to Sainsbury’s Uxbridge Road store.
16-19 category:
  • A meal for you and your parents at the two Michelin star Hand & Flowers in Marlow and a signed cookbook courtesy of Tom Kerridge.
  • A behind-the-scenes tour of the prestigious Oakley Court Hotel, including a masterclass from the hotel's Head Chef and a complimentary three course meal in the hotel's award-winning restaurant with your parents.
  • Baking accessories (worth over £75) courtesy of Sainsbury's Uxbridge Road store.

Second prize: 

  • Runners-up will each receive a celebrity cookbook and a complimentary meal at the Zest restaurant at Langley College.

How to enter:

For your chance to win, all you have to do is create your own starter, main course or dessert using whatever ingredients you wish. If you sre aged 12-15 (inclusive) we would like you to make a dessert and if you are aged 16-19 you should create a main course dish. Then email us with details and a photograph of your dish. You will need to be able to make the dish from scratch within 90 minutes by yourself with no help. The total cost of your ingredients should not exceed £20. Judges will be looking for creativity, presentation, flavours and cooking skills.

To enter the competition, please email the following information to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • Name of your dish
  • Recipe (How you made the dish)
  • List of ingredients (including quantities where possible)
  • Photo of your finished dish
  • Your full name
  • Date of Birth
  • Address (including postcode)
  • A contact telephone number
Closing date for entries is midnight on 2 March 2016 – So get cooking!

The judges:

Aaron MullisAaron Mullis

Aaron has been an integral member of the kitchen at Tom Kerridge’s two Michelin-star Hand & Flowers in Marlow since 2007, gaining promotion to head chef in 2012. Having previously worked in the West Country and London, he is now a driving force in the development of The Hand and Flowers kitchen. Responsible for running the kitchen alongside Tom Kerridge, Aaron has a brigade of 18 chefs with over 1,000 covers a week.

Nick BeardshawNick Beardshaw

Nick is head chef at The Coach, Tom Kerridge’s new venture. Prior to this he worked at The Hand and Flowers for four years alongside chef patron Tom Kerridge. He was also Chef de Partie at Midsummer House, Cambridge working under chef patron Daniel Clifford.

Tom kerridge webTom Kerridge

Tom Kerridge is a well-known Michelin star chef. A regular on the BBC's Great British Menu
and star of Proper Pub Food, Tom is one of the UK's top chefs and owns the
two Michelin star Hand & Flowers in Marlow.

Will torrent webWill Torrent

Will Torrent is an award-winning pastry chef and a consultant for Waitrose. Will has appeared
on Channel 4's Jamie & Jimmy's Food Fight Club and ITV's This Morning.


The Venue:

If your dish makes it through to the live final, you will have the chance to cook your dish for the judges on 15 March 2016 at East Berkshire College's Hospitality & Catering Academy at its Langley College. The academy features professional training kitchens and a public restaurant, which provides students with a realistic work environment. For more details on full-time and part-time courses in hospitality and catering, including apprenticeships, click here.

Terms and conditions:Entrants must be aged between 12 and 19 years old (inclusive) on 15/3/16. Selected finalists will be required to make their dish in a live final on 15/03/16 at Langley College and take part in publicity. Winners will be chosen by a panel of judges. Judges’ decision is final. Prizes cannot be exchanged for cash. Employees and current students (2015-16) of East Berkshire College cannot enter. Employees of Oakley Court Hotel and The Observer cannot enter. The organisers reserve the right to amend or cancel the competition. By entering this competition you agree to East Berkshire College contacting you with details of further promotions or courses in the future. The Observer T&Cs apply.

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