UCB's Katie triumphs to reach FutureChef regional final

November 2016

A young UCB apprentice chef is through to the regional final of a top cookery competition. 

Katie Cooper, 16, beat nine budding chefs in Springboard’s FutureChef contest after impressing the judges with a delicious dish of beef liver, pomme purée, star anise carrots and red onion jus. For her winning dessert, she cooked a sticky toffee pudding. 

Katie is one of the youngest members of UCB’s prestigious Royal Academy of Culinary Arts chef apprenticeship scheme

She said: “I’m looking forward to working with my mentor and developing my skills. I really enjoy cooking and want to do it for my career.” 

An independent panel of judges declared Katie the winner, and put her through to FutureChef’s West Midlands Regional Final following a cook-off at UCB.

Head judge George Outhwaite, of Hilton Metropole Birmingham, said: “The standard from these youngsters is unbelievable and all the dishes had positive elements. I hope they join us in the industry one day.” 

FutureChef directly relates to the national curriculum and aims to give young people aged 12 to 16 a life skill, developing their cooking and extending their understanding of nutrition. 

The competition culminates in March 2017 with the national final. 

Springboard regional manager Sophie Green said: “Springboard’s FutureChef was developed as a result of research into young people’s ideas about the hospitality industry. Research revealed that young people really admire high-profile celebrity chefs, yet surprisingly few genuinely consider a career as a chef. 

“Springboard’s FutureChef provides teachers and young people with a wonderful insight into the wealth of career opportunities that the hospitality sector has to offer.”