Wednesday, 17 September 2014

My Experience at the Devon Life Semi-Finals Cookery Competition at Ashburton Cookery School

I was lucky enough to be selected to take part in the semi finals of the Devon Life Home Cook of the Year 2014 cookery competition last weekend at Ashburton Cookery School.  They had good facilities and excellent helpers.
I had an hour to make one course - I chose to make a dessert and made the Devon Apple Cake, one of my staples, served with Devon clotted cream and handpicked blackberries.

I didn't go through to the next round, but I was up against some stiff competition in the form of a Goats Cheese and Asparagus Tart, Smoked Mackerel with a Poached Egg, Spinach and Sourdough and a Roast Meat + Veggie Roast.
It was an enjoyable whirlwind.  Cooking in a new, unfamiliar kitchen is tricky to say the least, despite there being nothing wrong with the Ashburton Cookery School kitchen, it wasn't my own kitchen so I had no idea where simple things were like a spoon, or a whisk.  The oven was stronger than my one at home.  Also cooking under time pressure (we had an hour) made the time whizz by and made me work very hard.

The finalists get to cook in the Ashbury Kitchen in Exeter and the overall winner will be announced on October at the Devon Life Food Awards.  The winner will receive a Kitchen Aid and other John Lewis goodies.

One of the highlights for me was having a very helpful lad to hand who did all my washing up - luxury!

My dish can just be seen at the bottom right of this photo:

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