Three Apprentice Chefs are sharpening their knives, researching their produce and perfecting their recipes in the lead-up to the Grand Final of the ETC Apprentice of the Year Cook-off competition to be held at Coffs Central on Thursday 11 July.
Among the finalists are Coffs Harbour local, Nicholas Delves. The second year Apprentice with The Hilltop Store at Sawtell won the Coffs Coast regional final back in March with his mouth watering dish – Roasted King Prawns with Desert Oak Butter and Sea Succulents.
“I’ve never done competitions before, cooked in front of a crowd or in a shopping centre before. That was my first time. It’s good now that I’ve done it and I can look back and think it wasn’t as hard as I thought. The nerves were crazy, but once that passed, it was all good from there. I can’t wait to do the next one.” Mr Delves said.
Joseph Carrall outcooked his competitors at the North Coast regional final with his Lemon Myrtle scented Barramundi. He will be out to impress his employer – Lismore Bounty Motel.
“Winning the regional was definitely the highlight of my career. It’s fantastic to have this opportunity to showcase what we can do as Apprentices, given that usually we are the ones hanging in the back of the kitchen that no one sees. I’m very excited for the Grand Final and aim to provide a top quality 5 star dish,” Mr Carrall said.
Third year Apprentice Sarah Townsend will be representing the Lower Mid North Coast and her employer Club Taree and is looking forward to showing off her culinary skills in the Cook-off.
“I’m still tweaking my recipe and experimenting with different elements at the moment. My employer is really happy that I made the Grand Final. They’re helping me with anything I need to prepare, so I can win this,” Ms Townsend said.
The finalists will be producing an original recipe, complete with sides and garnishes for a dish that features scallops or king prawns, seasonal produce and has an Asian influence.
They will have 35 minutes on the day of the competition to prepare and present four servings to a judging panel consisting of Latitude 30’s Marcus Blackwell, Taste Restaurant’s Bevan Collin and ETC’s Karen Busby.
The winner will take home a $500 cash prize and will be crowned the 2019 ETC Apprentice of the Year.
There will also be a People’s Choice Award – so make sure you come along on the day and vote for your favourite dish based on its presentation.
The event will be held from 11am – 1pm outside Kmart at the top of Coffs Central Shopping Centre.
If you would like to find out more or are interested in employing an Apprentice Chef contact ETC’s Ingrid Johansen on 0447 162 970 or visit www.etcltd.com.au/innprogram/yes-chef/
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