Professional Cookery students enjoy an action-packed Activity Week
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Professional Cookery students at UCB were treated to a packed programme of classes from industry experts last week, in a half-term break with a difference.
Activity Week, featuring live demonstrations from The Ritz in London and Edgbaston’s Simpsons Restaurant, gave students a unique insight into the life of a chef and the host of career options at their fingertips.
Ken Crossland from the organisation Hospitality Action kicked off proceedings with a hard-hitting talk on the drug and alcohol issues currently affecting the hospitality industry. A masterclass from Chef Director of Simpsons Restaurant Luke Tipping followed, cooking a signature dish from his Michelin-starred menu - pork cheeks with crispy onions and smoked eel cream.
Mark Morrans, Head Chef at Señor Ceviche Peruvian restaurant in London, wowed students with a demonstration making a classic Peruvian dish of octopus and sea bass ceviche in ‘tiger’s milk’, while South African chef Petrus Madutlela gave a lively Q and A about South African cooking and his role as head chef at the Poet restaurant in Kent.
Finally, the week was rounded off with something sweet – a masterclass on artisanal chocolate making for a small group of Level 3 students by high-end French chocolatiers Valrhona.
“This week wasn’t just about learning new recipes,” said the College of Food’s Assistant Dean John Penn. “It’s about students finding out everything they could possibly need to know about being a chef – different cuisines, levels of cooking, the current issues affecting the industry and how to strike that all-important work/life balance.
“We have had great feedback from students about every session, and it has been a pleasure to see them learn from such a spread of industry leaders.
“In the end, sessions like this are all about employability, and students have definitely come away from this week with a much clearer idea of the exciting career options ahead of them and exactly what they need to get there.”