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Find out what’s included in a National Chef of the Year winning menu

With it being just one month until the closing date for National Chef of the Year entries we’ve caught up with current winner, Larry Jayasekara to find out what was in his winning main course. 

When speaking about the moment his name was announced as winner, Larry told us “It’s something I’ve always wanted and a dream I was never going to give up on. Simply having the opportunity for your food to be sampled by some of the UK’s most well-respected judges is incredible. However, nothing can beat that moment when you are standing in a line with some of the most talented and up and coming chefs in the UK and it’s you that is declared as the winner. Good luck to all the chefs entering this year, whatever stage you get to you won’t regret being part of this experience.”

If you are busy planning your entry at the moment seeing a previous winner’s menu may help spark an idea or creation. Just a reminder that this year’s entry brief is to produce a creative lunch menu for two guests that could be cooked-up within two hours. The menu must consist of a risotto starter of the competitor’s choice; a main course using a whole chicken, with appropriate accompaniments and a choux pastry dessert of choice.

Roast loin of venison, nutmeg celeriac puree, cavelo nero, blackberries

  • 4 x 120g venison loin
  • 2g juniper berries
  • 10g butter
  • 1g thyme

Vacuum pack the venison – each into one bag – then poach at 63°C for 25 min and then rest for 10 min. Remove from the bag and season the meat with salt then roast in a hot pan for 3-4 min. Add butter, thyme and juniper berries, cook for 2-3 min, remove from the pan then slice and serve.

Nutmeg celeriac puree:

  • 400g thin sliced celeriac
  • 30g butter
  • 100ml milk
  • 50g double cream
  • 3g ground nutmeg

Place the butter into a pan until it melts then add celeriac, cook until the celeriac is getting soft then add milk and cream. Bring it to boil and blitz until smooth. Once you blend, pass trough a chinar and season with salt and nutmeg then ready to serve.

Cavolo nero

  • 50g cavolo nero
  • 1L water
  • 10g salt

Bring to the boil water and salt then add cavolo nero. Blanch till soft then remove from the hot water straight into ice water. Once is refreshed portion to the size you want then reheat in a pan with little butter and serve.

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