199 Steps to Success

Dracula-themed menu is a winner for Whitby school chef

When school chef Katherine Breckon was devising her competition menu, she knew it had to be something to get her teeth into.

The creative cook, who works at Westcliff Primary School, Whitby, North Yorkshire, took inspiration from her local town – the setting of Bram Stoker’s Dracula novel – and produced a menu which would send chills up the spines of the judges!

Kath was the Yorkshire & Humber finalist in the LACA (Lead Association for CAtering in Education) School Chef of the Year 2016 and was awarded the top accolade by a panel of judges at the national final held at Stratford upon Avon College, Warwickshire. She said: “With the skill amongst this year’s finalists being so high, I felt it was an achievement in itself to compete with such a talented group of people. All of this just goes to prove what a good job school chefs do, day in, day out, up and down the country to provide tasty, nutritious meals for millions of children.”

Contestants had a maximum of £1.60 to spend and just one and a half hours to produce a healthy balanced two-course meal comprising of a main course and dessert that would appeal to eleven year olds in school. The nutritional content of contestants’ dishes had to comply with the new School Food Standards, as specified by the Government’s School Food Plan introduced into all schools in England in January 2015.

Peter McGrath, LACA national chair, said: “LACA School Chef of the Year is a fantastic way of showing why every school should be striving for a high quality catering service. School meals can play a major role in laying the foundations for children’s future eating habits and their long-term health. Our front-line catering teams are, therefore, critical to the process of educating young people about how food and eating better can help them achieve more, both academically and physically.”

Katherine’s winning dishes

Main Course: St Hilda’s Spicy Beef Pot, Caedmon Cross-Bread, Bram Stoker Sweetcorn and 199 Steps Croquettes A warming beef chilli with garlic cornbread, sweet potato and butternut squash croquettes.

Dessert: Dracula’s Bat-tastic Baked Lemon Cheesecake A light baked lemon cheesecake on an oat cookie base served with a berry compote.

Click here to read the rest of the May 2016 issue of Stir it up