Searching for best young chef

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THE BEST young chefs from the local area will be crowned tomorrow (Saturday) at the finals of Angus Young Chef of the Year 2012.

The contest was launched during September’s ‘A Taste of Angus’ festival and was open to local fifth and sixth year pupils, catering students and trainees, who had to submit detailed recipes for a three-course meal including at least five local ingredients.

Entries were received from budding chefs across the county and Neil Jack of Angus College, one of the judges in Angus Young Chef of the Year, revealed that this resulted in an excellent selection of menus featuring Angus produce.

He said: “I’d like to congratulate everyone who entered this competition for having so many wonderful ideas about making the most of the produce that’s grown, harvested, caught, reared and made on our doorsteps.”

The finals of the contest will take place at Angus Farmers Market’s special Christmas market at Forfar Mart, when the four young finalists will showcase their culinary skills in front of an audience – and the panel of judges.

The finalists in category one are young chefs in fifth or sixth year at school and include Ashmita Bhaltarai of Arbroath High School, who will be cooking lamb and barley biryani.

She will be up against Jo Milne of Montrose Academy, who will be hoping to impress the judges with her ginger salmon with mustard and roasted cherry tomatoes.

Category two is for catering students and trainees aged between 16 and 23.

The finalists in this category are Becky Sherriff of The Pear Tree Restaurant at Auchterhouse, who will be pitting her updated version of ham haddy against the dish of choice of Sam Chalmers of The Drovers Inn, Memus - roasted partridge with new potatoes, crushed carrots and turnip with sage and red current jus.

“The final of Angus Young Chef of the Year will be a mouth-watering addition to Angus Farmers Market’s special Christmas market,” concluded Neil.