Lexington Catering chefs Matt Jaynes and Laura Hodgskin took gold at the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) Ready Steady Cook challenge last week.
They saw off competition from 15 other teams from UK contract caterers with their winning menu of pan-fried gilt-head bream with crushed purple potato, watercress, spring onion and lemon buerre blanc followed by pear, blackberry and white chocolate doughnuts with vanilla anglaise.
All competing teams were given a mystery bag of ingredients, 30 minutes to plan their menu and then just 30 minutes to cook two courses with just one induction hob to cook on.
The judges included Geoff Booth, head of catering at Westminster Kingsway College, Sara Jayne Stanes from the Academy of Culinary Arts, and Madalene Bonvini-Hamel, joint-owner and chef at the British Larder.
They said it was the strongest year ACE had seen, adding that the winning menu had "two exceptionally strong courses presented well with exceptional detail on taste and texture".
Head chef Jaynes and chef de partie Hodgskin work together at Lexington's contract at Marlow International. They each won a tasting menu for two at the three-Michelin-starred Fat Duck, and a tour of the kitchen with the head chef.
Residents at St Mungo's hostel for the homeless benefited from the event by receiving all leftovers as well as all the unused ingredients, while the equipment, including pans and chopping boards, will be donated to the hostel.
By Janie Manzoori-Stamford
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