Cooking competition conquers
fish fear in local teens
"I don’t like fish,” is a comment often heard from Wellington teenagers when they encounter the Chef for a Day’s competition dish say WelTec Chef and judge Toby Sanderson.
“A lot of teenagers say they don’t like fish when they see our menu, but when they see the finished dish presented in front of them and get to create it and taste it, they change their minds, ” says Sanderson.
The WelTec judging pair of Sanderson and Jim Collins has been carrying out Chef for a Day in various high schools for the last month and say that fuelling the enthusiasm of young chefs in the making and encouraging a passion in a variety of foods are the things they like most about visiting schools.
Year 12 student team Hope Henley-Weir and Mackenzie Abbot from Wellington High School won first prize overall for their creation in Chef for a Day, at the college last week.
Preparing the dish Terakihi en Papillote, which the students said is a fancy French name for Fish in Paper, was a new experience for both. This was especially so for Mackenzie aged sixteen who is not a fish fan. Both agreed that the experience of cooking for the visiting chefs was less nerve-wracking than cooking for their teachers.
Collins who is also involved in New Zealand’s Master Chef competition says he hopes to see some of the faces again when WelTec opens its new Hospitality campus in Cuba St, Wellington later this year.
Sanderson says the site is being transformed beyond recognition into a state of the art facility. It will give students an opportunity to learn culinary schools to top international standards and he ‘can’t wait’ to begin classes there.
Image: Lyall Bay’s Hope Henley-Weir and Mackenzie Abbot from Wellington High School with their winning dish for WelTec’s Chef for a Day competition. WelTec tutor and judge Toby Sanderson looks on in the background.
Press Release - 22 June 2012
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