Professional Cookery learners show skill at Salon Culinaire

Two Level 3 Professional Cookery learners from the Grimsby Institute are celebrating placing in the finals of competitions at one of the UK’s most prestigious competitions for chefs, the International Salon Culinaire at Hotelympia, thanks to funding from the Savoy Educational Trust.

International Salon Culinaire at Hotelympia is the UK’s largest and most prestigious chef competition programme, incorporating over 80 classes over the course of four days, showcasing the impressive skills and talent within the industry.

The Savoy Educational Trust is an independent, grant giving charitable trust, whose main aim is to advance and develop education, training and qualifications within the hospitality industry.   The Trust offered funding to over 100 learners, giving them the opportunity to take part in the competitions, including an overnight stay in London and covering transportation and meals.

Tom Kerridge, who recently won the Lincolnshire Life Young Chef of the Year Competition, took part in the amuse-bouche section of the competition. Tom said: “I had to create two different amuse-bouche for the competition. I did a scallop with cous-cous and smoked salmon with cucumber and cream cheese. I only had 30 minutes to prepare both and I was competing against various other colleges. I put in all of the skills I have learnt over the three years to help me prepare.

“It felt very rewarding to come second, especially with the amount of effort that I had put in with my tutor, Paul Robinson, in getting up to spec. During my time at the Institute I’ve taken part in about twelve competitions and they look really good on your CV.”

Fellow learner, Kayleigh Keenan, competed in the Knife Skills section of the competition, demonstrating a mixture of skills for the judges, also placing second. Kayleigh said: “I’ve never done a competition before and it was really good fun. At first I was really nervous but as soon as I got to my station I knew what I had to do.

“It was really difficult and I didn’t quite complete everything I needed to but I still placed second. We got to talk to lots of people from different backgrounds and it was just such a good experience.”

Paul Robinson, Grimsby Institute’s Programme Leader for Professional Cookery, added: “The competitions have been a fantastic opportunity for our learners to showcase their talents and compete on a global platform, demonstrating the skills we have taught them.

“I am exceptionally proud of Tom and Kayleigh and without the support of the Savoy Educational Trust, none of this would have been possible.”