Cooking has been a great comfort during lockdowns with many young people turning to the kitchen for some fun and stress relief. Now comes an opportunity for young cooks in Shropshire from age 12 to 14 to enter a cookery competition from home as part of their school online learning or as a family activity.
The Create & Cook Competition is looking for keen young cooks to enter its 2021 competition which has a closing date of 26th March 2021. The challenge is to create a two-course menu using Shropshire ingredients with the aim of celebrating local food and nurturing young talent.
Run by fit2cook food education and sponsored by Midcounties Coop Best of our Counties, the competition ties in with KS3 curriculum learning about sustainability and food miles.
Now that schools are closed, the Create & Cook Competition has moved online with worksheets and weekly challenges posted on its social media to help teenagers learn about the fantastic food producers and farmers across Shropshire and understand why local food is not only good for the local economy but also the planet.
Daisy Carrol aged 12 and Grace Hannah aged 13 from Shrewsbury High School rose to the Create & Cook challenge in 2020, winning the competition. Their winning menu was cumin-crusted lamb with shallots and crushed new potatoes and tomatoes with a strawberry cream Paris-brest choux pastry ring.
The girls sourced their spring lamb from Battlefield 1403 Farm Shop, their strawberries, potatoes and shallots from JP Fruits in Shrewsbury’s Market Hall and their cream from Mawley Dairies. The skill in their choux pastry Paris-brest was particularly impressive for such young cooks and praised by the judges. Runners up were Amy Jones and Trinity Costello from Thomas Adams School, Wem with a Shropshire paprika chicken burger with chips and homemade coleslaw; homegrown rhubarb crumble with Shropshire cream.
Matt Fletcher, Sourcing Manager of Best of our Counties from Midcounties Coop says, “Supporting young people and local suppliers is incredibly important to us and the Create & Cook competition is a fun way for us to get schools into cooking with the amazing ingredients made here in Shropshire.”
Min Raisman from fit2cook food education, the competition organiser, thinks the resurgence of interest in buying local and the desire to tackle climate change makes the competition very relevant “It’s wonderful to see young cooks taking real pride in their local food suppliers and where they live. There is a real drive amongst young people to save the planet, they see the clear link between buying local, limiting food miles and reducing carbon emissions. This all bodes well for the future of our local food and farming sectors and the environment.”
To find out how to enter the 2021 competition and to see past winning menus go here.