Sponsored by Seafish, the public body that supports the £10bn UK seafood industry, the competition, run by The Grimsby Institute, always attracts a high calibre of student.
The annual competition, now in its 17th year, seeks out those aspiring chefs and encourages them to cook with seafood.
The young chefs, all under the age of 25, will be competing in one of three regional heats to be held at City College, Norwich (10th May), Sunderland College (17th May), and Coleg Llandrillo Cymru, North Wales (24th May). They will work in teams of two to produce a three course seafood menu using sustainably sourced seafood.
2018 Competition winners Jamie Cracknell and Sagar Massey from West College Scotland said they were “overwhelmed” by their win last year.
“We weren’t expecting it at all. We had a really good insight from lecturers over the year, who really helped us onto the right path.
“The competition is a great way to progress your career, and opens your eyes to innovative ways of cooking seafood.”
Each team will be judged by a panel of professionals, including a regional chef. The judging will be headed by Ben Bartlett, Master Craft Guild of Chefs, BBQ Champ and Seafish Chef Ambassador.
Nine teams will go through to the Grand Final at The Grimsby Institute on Friday 7th June where they will cook a three course seafood menu, while being judged. The final judges are yet to be confirmed, but in the past have included Jean-Christophe Novelli, Cyrus Todiwala, Nathan Outlaw, Aiden Byrne, Tom Aitkens and Mitch Tonks, Nikki Hawkins, Trade Events Manager, Seafish said: “The UK Young Seafood Chef of the Year is an important event for the industry. It encourages future chefs to think about innovative ways to cook and present seafood.
“It also encourages them to develop their knowledge on sustainability and sourcing of seafood, which is a vital when planning a menu today.”
Paul Robinson, Curriculum Manager, Hospitality at The Grimsby Institute said:
“The experience of this competition will give the young chefs a chance to develop new skills. It’s invaluable and will help with their future careers in the catering industry.”
The winning team will receive a Koppert Cress ‘Cressperience’ trip to Holland; a Robot Coupe Robot Cook food processor; £500 each; £1,000 voucher for Russum’s catering equipment for their college; cookbook; competition trophy; competition medal and prize certificates. All winning recipes will feature on the Seafood Week 2019 website.
Headline sponsor Seafish, Young’s Seafood; Koppert Cress; Robot Coupe, Russum’s, Billingsgate Seafood Training School, Corney & Barrow Wines; The Big Prawn Company and Oak Ridge Hotel Group.
The deadline for applications and paper entries to the competition is Monday 1st April 2019.