Alice Peel from Sodexo has been named annual Gourmet Dessert Chef of the Year having triumphed at a live cook off at the Good Housekeeping Institute in London.
The live cook-off saw chef de partie Peel go head to head with Cheal's of Henley pastry chef Howing Lai, Robert Stordy, lecturer in culinary arts at Derby School of Hospitality, and Hannah Ward from Whisk and Spoon Catering.
They were all tasked with creating a dessert putting a contemporary twist on the classic ice-cream sundae.
Impressed by Peel's well-matched flavours, the four-strong panel of judges awarded her strawberry, lime and Champagne sundae as this year's star dessert.
She said: "I'm honoured to have been crowned the winner of Mövenpick Ice Cream's Gourmet Dessert Chef of the Year competition. I worked hard to make sure the taste of Mövenpick was a real focus and thought about my presentation in-depth. I've always loved strawberry and lime as a dessert pairing and, combined with a little fizz, thought it'd give my sundae a lovely summery taste."
Peel will showcase her winning recipe at Taste of London, as well as receiving VIP tickets to the festival, spending money and a two-night stay at a four-star London hotel.
Led by head judge and compere Will Torrent, all recipes were analysed by mixologist Lee Hyde, The Caterer's products and suppliers editor Lisa Jenkins and last year's Gourmet Dessert Chef winner and chef at the London Marriott Country Hall hotel Biju Joshwa.
Torrent said: "We were really impressed by the enthusiasm and attention to detail shown by all four of this year's finalists. For us, Alice's strawberry, lime and Champagne sundae was the clear winner, thanks to its beautifully balanced flavours and superb presentation. Alice successfully made the Mövenpick Double Cream & Meringue Ice Cream the sundae's hero, complemented by the fruity bite of the strawberries, lime and fresh Champagne. It was a truly stunning summer sundae."
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