Young Chef District Final 2012

another very successful final

The Rotary District 1040 Young Chef final was held at Bettys Cookery School Harrogate on Tuesday 24th January 2012, when 9 young chefs aged between 13 and 15 years took part.


Each Young Chef had progressed from club competitions held by Rotary Clubs including the North Group (Knaresborough, Northallerton Mowbray & Thirsk), East Group (York Clubs), South West Group  (Halifax and Huddersfield Clubs ), Bradford Group ( Bradford and Bingley Clubs ), Leeds Group (Leeds ), and the Dales Group .


The Young Chefs were required to prepare a three course meal in 2 hours for under £15 and were judged on a number of disciplines including Healthy choice of dish, Planning, Costing, Skills used, Neatness and Hygiene of working area, Wise use of time, Meal served at correct temperature, Presentation of table, Taste and Presentation of the three courses.


The judges were Lisa Bennison and Amy Calin both Senior Course Tutors at the Bettys Cookery School. The event was organized by Rotarian Gill Poole from the Rotary club of Mirfield .


The standard of cooking was extremely high and the judges declared that it had been very difficult to decide on a winner. After careful deliberations they decided that the winner was Jessica Berry (aged 15) from Upper Wharfedale School, sponsored by the Rotary Clubs in the Dales group, who cooked a starter of Marinated Loch Tay trout with seared king scallops, a main course of Anise spiced Goosnargh duck breast, spatzle, cherry jus and a dessert of Baked chocolate fondant, Singed oranges, Townhead cream.


The runner up was Megan Haneskog (aged13) from Nidderdale High School, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Knaresborough, with a Japanese inspired Menu comprising a starter of King Prawn Sushi served with wasabi, a main course of Teriyaki Salmon with soya beans, mange tout and homemade egg noodles served with chilli and soy dipping sauce, and a dessert of Mango and ginger ice cream in a Filo basket served with mango coulis.


All the contestants were presented by the Rotary District Governor Willie Clark. with a framed certificate, a Bettys chef’s apron, a box of kitchen utensils and the winner also received a Glass Rotary Trophy


The winner and runner up will now go forward to compete in the Regional Final to be held at Ilkeston Derbyshire on the 24th March 2012.


The winners of the Regional Final will then go to the national RIBI Final of Rotary Young Chef in April. The overall national winner receives a trip to Italy, thanks to the sponsors Filippo Berio Olive Oil, a day’s tuition with a Michelin Star Chef in the UK and £250 Cash prize.


 For more information about Rotary's projects for young people go to