Michelin-starred chef Heston Blumenthal has teamed up with exam board OCR to help draft a new GCSE designed to get young people engaged in cooking.
In line with the chef’s own interest in molecular structures and culinary processes, the Food Preparation and Nutrition GCSE will seek to engage students in the science behind food, allowing them to understand effects such as how eggs create a “stable emulsified sauce” (such as mayonnaise), and act as a “raising agent” (meringue).
The chef – whose Berkshire restaurant the Fat Duck has three Michelin stars and is poised to reopen this month after six months in Melbourne – launched the new examination at a London school, St Michael’s Catholic College, last week. He demonstrated a range of recipes from the course, as well as showing off his famous ice-cream made with liquid nitrogen.
Blumenthal has also appeared in a range of educational videos for the qualification, and has offered “Heston’s hints” to appear in a new textbook accompanying the paper.
OCR is part of the Cambridge Assessment group, and is expected to open the two-year course to students at the beginning of the next academic year, 2016. The first examinations will take place in 2018.
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