The Craft Guild of Chefs has revealed a new challenge for the competitors of the 2021 Young National Chef of the Year competition.
The criteria for the three courses is based around British dishes with a twist, where the guild is looking for "imagination without losing sight of the classic element".
Entrants will be asked to create a 'Twisted Scotch broth' – a modern vegetarian or vegan version of a classic Scotch broth. Using inspiration from Knorr's Future 50 ‘Beans and Pulses' and ‘Cereals and Grains' categories, the judges will be looking for an innovative approach and for the young chefs to elevate the broth to a fine dining experience.
Other dishes will be a take on a classic British fish and chips using a prime fillet of haddock or cod from Seafood from Norway, and an interpretation of the classic crumble using seasonal fruits for dessert.
The 18 chefs competing in the final are:
- James Greenwood-Penny, chef de partie, the Fire Engine Inn
- Jamaar Semper-House, junior sous chef, Lucknam Park
- Harry Osborne, sous chef, Quay Hotel & Spa, Conwy
- Owen Connell, chef de partie, Hillgate Quays
- Ethan Lawson-Earley, senior chef de partie, the Atlantic Hotel
- Robert McCreerybreen, chef de partie, Paul Ainsworth @No6
- Kieran Bradley, chef de partie, Vineyard Hotel and Spa
- Ieuan Andrew Davies, chef de partie, Castle Inn, Castle Combe
- Eden Allsworth, demi chef de partie, Cliveden House
- Sagar Massey, sous chef, Mar Hall hotel
- Jacob Gosselin, chef de partie, Longueville Manor Hotel and Restaurant
- Joshua Rooney, chef de partie, Paul Ainsworth at No.6
- Henry Macleod, junior sous chef, the Hardwick
- Keaton Cooper, commis chef, the Angel at Hetton
- Bethany Disley-Jones, junior sous pastry, the Art School Restaurant
- Nathan Lane, junior sous chef at the Greenhouse
- Daniel Cornish, senior chef de partie, Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons
- Stephen Naylor, senior chef de partie, Restaurant Story
David Mulcahy, organiser of Young National Chef of the Year and vice-president of the Craft Guild of Chefs, said: "Following a challenging period for our industry, I am delighted that through the combined efforts of so many professional bodies and individuals we have an exciting competition to host this year. We have had an amazing level of interest and a compelling list of candidates being put forward to compete for this year's competition.
"Additionally, our chair of judges, Hrishikesh Desai, has helped to shape a truly inspiring criteria for the menu. Young chefs will learn and develop through this year's journey and competitors will be recognised at the live screening event later this year. The ultimate winner can expect to join a prestigious hall of fame, as well as enjoying some amazing career development experiences and prizes."
Desai, who is executive chef at the Gilpin Hotel and Lake House, added: "I cannot wait to see how the young chefs interpret the brief, but as they plan their menus, I want them all to remember the 'sky is the limit' with their ideas, but to keep the Britishness in the dishes. This is going to make one hell of a competition to judge, so bring it on young guns!"
Once menus have been judged, 10 chefs will be selected to compete in the final at Le Cordon Bleu, with the winner revealed live screening of the cook-off in October. Three chefs, Nathan Lane, Daniel Cornish and Stephen Naylor are automatically seeded into the final.
Picture: Edwin Kuk, Young National Chef of the Year winner 2020