School Life: Budding young chefs dish up tasty desserts

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It was time to don the chef jackets and hats as Kirklees College’s Annual Young Chef of the Year Competition took place.

The competition, for students in years nine to 11, aims to find aspiring young chefs, give them guidance and encouragement in their chosen career and allow them to showcase their culinary skills.

From the entries received, 18 young people were selected to take part in two heats and year nine student Megan Crabtree from Rastrick High School was delighted to make it into the final.

The eight remaining entrants including Megan battled it out to create a show-stopping dessert in under two hours to wow the judges Anthony Hegney – founder and director of Asparagus Green and Sally Russum – director of Russums catering supplies.

Each contestant had to create and serve four portions of a restaurant style plated dessert and sweet sauce of their choice which must cost no more than £6 and all ingredients had to be cooked from fresh – no pre-prepared sauces were to be used.

Megan added: “I was given feedback on how I could improve the recipe for the final and for the next few weeks I tried many different ways to make the presentation better, family members were living off profiteroles.”

“Having decided on my final design, I went into the final with more confidence than the heat but still worried that something might go wrong on the day. “

However, when the day arrived, Megan rose to the challenge and her profiteroles with chocolate sauce dish was awarded third place, a fantastic achievement and well deserved.

Megan said: “Overall I was pleased with what I produced and when it was announced that I had been awarded third place, I was very happy.

“The overall experience has been fantastic and something I will look back on with pride.”

Supporting asylum seekers

Recently Rastrick High School’s PE department donated its surplus sports clothing and textbooks to support the Destitute Asylum Seekers Huddersfield (DASH) project.

Subject leader for PE, Jason Battye, first heard about the project and the opportunity to donate clothing whilst at Huddersfield parkrun. He subsequently set about collating his own surplus sportswear as well as pulling together the old football kits and sports clothing from the PE department.

This coupled with an abundance of old textbooks were donated to the DASH project via Andy Cook of Kirklees Council.

Mr Battye’s hope was that the kit that hadn’t been used for many years and textbooks that have now been superceded, would still be able to prove to be useable either to help with sport, or to improve people’s education and develop English language skills.

DASH supports about 250 asylum-seekers living in Huddersfield, with clients from over 30 countries. Clients are of all ages and DASH supports them in many ways.

Rastrick High Michael Shaw, of DASH, said: “Our clients were delighted by the donation of sports kit by Rastrick High School. Asylum-seekers love sport just as much as anyone else and, although opportunities to take part are restricted, they are seized upon, for example, some of our clients take part in football matches in a local park.

“Having proper football kit to wear not only means that they don’t have to wear their everyday clothes but, looking the part makes a telling contribution to integration.”

Pupils explore different countries

It’s been yet another term of fabulous over seas adventures with the modern foreign languages department - taking key stage three and four students on some wonderful visits to Europe.

At the end of May, 20 students took part in our annual French exchange with Collège de Marseillan in the South of France.

Students attended school in the morning and participated in various activities in the afternoon such as tree climbing in Cap d’Agde and volleyball on the beach at Marseillan.

They enjoyed a day trip by train to the nearby city of Montpellier where they experienced the beautiful Place de la Comédie and a huge variety of French shops within the city.

Year eight student Isobel said: “The food was very different to what I am used to but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I tried fresh oysters and a regional delicacy of octopus and tomato pie. My host family were extremely friendly and we both tried to speak our foreign language.

“It was certainly a once in a lifetime chance and I hope to go next year.”

And with one group in France, our Spanish loving students visited Barcelona for four days in June for a fun and laughter packed trip of activities.

They walked their way around the beautiful city centre and had the good fortune to visit the Sagrada Familia Cathedral, the Nou Camp stadium and the new Cosmo Caixa interactive Science Museum.

Esha said: “I had an unforgettable trip to Barcelona and it was a great experience.”