THIRTEEN Students from seven local schools, including Helston and Mullion and took part in the local heat of the FutureChef competition hosted by Penwith College in Penzance.

These talented students aged between 12 and 16 had the opportunity to showcase their skills, creating a two course menu on a budget of £7. The winners will be invited to the Cornwall Final which will take place in Padstow on December 2 at the Seafood School and Old Custom House. The winner from this will be invited to the regional final and ultimately the National Final taking place at Westminster Kingsway College in London in March 2016.

The three winners were Mushka Crossman from Humphry Davy school who impressed the judges with her chicken and bacon tagliatelli with cream and white wine sauce followed by eclairs; Holly McGroary from Helston School who created an impressive menu of a 3 curry platter with roast cauliflower and chapatti followed by mango samosas and Maia Tierney from Mullion School whose menu included squash and ricotta ravioli with sage butter and lemon posset and biscotti.

Jaime Gaspare, head of professional cookery and hospitality at Penwith College and previously of Jamie Oliver’s 13 restaurant said: “This is a great competition and I am delighted with the energy and enthusiasm of these young people. We work in an amazing industry with so much opportunity for talented students who are prepared to work hard.”

Paul Lucock, Springboard Development Manager for Cornwall and Isles of Scilly commented: "The Springboard FutureChef initiative is the biggest and most successful national school cooking programme. It inspires students to learn to cook, introduces them and their schools to well respected industry chefs, offers the opportunity to win fantastic prizes and gain anything from a valuable life skill to an informed career path into the UK's hospitality industry."

Springboard's FutureChef was developed as the result of research which revealed that young people admire higher profile and celebrity chefs, yet, surprisingly few generally consider a career as a chef.

Springboard's FutureChef Local Finals are judged by industry chefs with the winner paired up with a local industry chef mentor, to work on their dishes for the Regional Final.A range of employer sponsors are involved in the initiative and dedicated to inspiring young talent into the industry.