A Morpeth schoolgirl made her mark in a contest covering the north of England thanks to her creative cooking.
Among the competitors at the Springboard FutureChef semi-finals in Sheffield was Ellie Morgan from Chantry Middle School and Technology College. Last term, she won the Northumberland/Tyne & Wear heat.
The Year 8 student competed against five other pupils who were up to the age of 16 at Sheffield Hallam University and she finished second.
She made North African lamb cutlets served with minted crushed potatoes and grilled vine tomatoes as well as a desert of strawberry shortcake and caramel tuile millefeuille. There was a 90-minute time limit.
Ellie said: “I knew it was going to be a tough competition because the person who won at the north area stage last year was back again, although I just concentrated on what I had to do and I was pleased with what I made.
“I was very happy to be awarded second place. There was a bit of tension in the room, but I’ve really enjoyed taking part in the competition as it has helped me to improve my cooking skills and hopefully I can enter it next year when I’m at King Edward VI School.
“I enjoy cooking lamb and it’s great doing curries and stir fry because I get to try different ingredients together.
“I would like to thank Miss (Lisa) Elliott at school and my mum Jenny and brother Robbie at home for helping me with my cooking.”
The Lancaster Park resident won a chef experience day at a restaurant in Newcastle and she was also presented with her own personalised chef’s whites, hat and apron.
Miss Elliott, subject leader for design and technology at Chantry, said: “We are extremely proud of Ellie’s achievements in this competition, especially as she was up against older children. She did plenty of preparation for it, including working with her chef mentor Bob Hendry from Taylor Shaw.”
In the Northumberland/Tyne and Wear heat, Tom Colvin of Newminster Middle School and Technology College was second.