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Today is the last chance for youngsters to enter children's cookery contest Kent Cooks

By Liz Nicholls

Delicious treats cooked by Petham Primary School pupils are among the entries for the Kent Cooks contest - which closes for entries at midnight tonight!

Tallis Pilbeam-Carter, Antonin Corcoran, Summer Graham and Alice Williams, all 10 years old, from Petham Primary School, are entering the Kent Cooks contest.

Tallis Pilbeam-Carter, Antonin Corcoran, Summer Graham and Alice Williams, all 10 years old from Petham Primary School, get cooking.

The school has been running its own cookery club for four years – with pupils using produce from the school’s own vegetable patch to conjure up delicious and nutritious dishes.

And two members are now hoping to win money, cookery books and cooking equipment after entering the annual Kent Cooks competition.

Family liaison officer Sue King, who runs the club, explained: “We had a really lovely kitchen that wasn’t being used, and I thought this would be a really good extra-curricular activity.

“Tesco had a campaign where they were trying to get as many children across the country cooking as possible, so we were given recipes and vouchers to buy things with.”

The children have made everything from Spanish tortilla to cranberry muffins, to pasta sauce using the school’s tomatoes.

The club has between six and eight members at a time, with membership changing every half term, meaning several dozen pupils each year are learning to create good-tasting grub.

And with Kent Cooks closing tomorrow, in a few weeks Antonin Corcoran, who came up with a dish of broccoli and Ashdown cheese in a bread bowl, and Alice Williams, who produced a fruit bombe, will know if they’ve made the Masterchef-style final.

“The club helps to grow the children’s confidence, and means they are able to do something that they wouldn’t otherwise get the chance to do,” Mrs King added.

“I feel quite strongly that children should cook, and they don’t always get the chance to do so in this day and age – parents are busy.

“We’re trying to feed it into the curriculum – they do all the weighing and measuring themselves, so it helps with their maths.

“We have around four this year that are really good. You can hand the older ones a recipe and they can follow it.”

The Kent Cooks competition is open to children and young people aged between six and 19 years. Youngsters who make it to the exciting Kent Cooks final at East Kent College will prepare their menus in a professional kitchen for a panel of VIPs.

Judging the entries will be representatives from NFU Mutual, S.E. Medical, Golding Vision (part of Golding Homes), Orbit, Benenden Hospital Trust, Best Western Abbots Barton Hotel, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, Chequers Kitchen Cookery School, Licensing Consultancy Services, Suzanne Howe Communications, FFK Catering, The Southern Co-operative, Whole School Meals, and Brakes.

To submit an entry before midnight tonight, visit www.kentcooks.co.uk For more information or queries, contact Maxine Tarquini on mtarquini@thekmgroup.co.uk or call 0844 264 0291.

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