Care UK chefs cook up a storm in national competition

October 13th 2017

Chef of the yearFour care home chefs are set to battle it out in the final of Care UK’s Chef of the Year competition.

Over 100 chefs from around the country were challenged to put their culinary skills to the test to be in with a chance of winning the coveted title in Care UK’s annual competition.

To secure their place as finalists, each chef was asked to prepare a two-course lunch in 90 minutes, ensuring that the menu would appeal to residents and stayed within the budget set by the judges.

From Ferndown Manor, head chef Scott Moore prepared a dish called “Three Little Pigs”, made up of pork tenderloin with wholegrain mustard sauce, pork belly lardons, and pork cheek croquette with broad beans and carrots. Following this, Scott created a dark chocolate and rhubarb fondant with rhubarb compote for dessert.

David Burfoot, head chef at Brook Court, served up a roasted pork fillet with thyme potato rosti, asparagus tips, baby carrot and tender stem broccoli with an apple and cinnamon balsamic glaze. For dessert, David whipped up a deconstructed strawberry gateaux cheesecake.

Second chef at Wellmeadow Lodge, Anna Chwalek, cooked up Greek-style baked chicken strips which she served with a barley and red cabbage salad. For dessert, she served her signature dish known as ‘Velvet Forest Moss’.

Craig McCarthy, Field Lodge’s second chef, served up a beef ragu with handmade tagliatelle which was accompanied with a seasonal salad. To complement the flavours, he paired this with a summer pudding with Chantilly cream and a passion fruit coulis for dessert.

Each meal was then presented to a panel of four judges, which included two residents, who scored each dish based on the presentation, nutrition, use of products, taste and texture.

James Clear, hotel services manager (south) at Care UK, said: “This competition has been hotly contested with 40 applicants in the first round. The standard has been unbelievably high, with creative and delicious dishes prepared by the chefs. The final will be a fantastic opportunity for the remaining four chefs to showcase all the talent and expertise they have to offer – using as many ingredients as they can from a mystery box of produce, the chefs will have two hours to plan and produce a two-course meal. I look forward to sampling the final dishes!”

The finals, which will take place on Tuesday 17 October, will see the four finalists compete to be crowned Care UK’s Chef of the Year.