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CATERING & HOSPITALIT Y | NEWS | 25


PARENTS’ VIEWS ON SCHOOL PACKED LUNCHES SOUGHT


Eton College sous chef’s competition triumph


New research at Leeds Metropolitan University is set to examine parents’ choices in providing packed lunches for their children. The project, led by Dr Hannah Ensaff from the faculty of health and social sciences, will seek to gain insight into parents’ knowledge of their children’s diets through an online questionnaire for parents of primary-school-age children. Dr Ensaff explains: “School


packed lunches can play an important part in children’s nutrition, with children spending 190 days of the year at school. More significantly, they provide a link between the home and school and can represent a family’s provision of food. Packed lunches have also been identified as a factor in children’s diet, and have been highlighted with respect to the drive for school food reform. “Our study will reveal


gaps in our understanding and allow us to identify areas for support. With the current high prevalence of childhood obesity and diets high in saturated fat and sugar, along with low fruit and vegetable consumption, this research has the potential to make a real impact.” The questionnaire is live


and open to parents with children in primary school (both having school dinners and packed lunches) at htp://surveys.leedsmet. ac.uk/snapwebhost/s. asp?k=139869340412


LEFT: James Tanner, Danny Hoang, Louisa May Matthews, Neil Murray RIGHT: Louisa in action


A junior sous chef at Eton College has beaten hundreds of chefs from across the UK and Ireland to win the Sodexo Chef of the Year. Louisa May Mathews saw off fierce competition from nine other regional finalists to scoop the top prize after a 90-minute live cook- off held at Hotelympia, the UK’s largest exhibition for the foodservice and hospitality industry. Cyrus Todiwala OBE was among the panel of top chefs who judged the finalists’ three-course meals, choosing Louisa’s as the stand-out entry. Louisa’s winning menu was a starter


of hake, lobster claw, parsley and bisque cream reduction, a main course of butermilk poached loin of pork puffed skin, press potato, green vegetables with Knorr herb buter and beef stock reduction, and a dessert of chocolate tart with raspberry, honeycomb, orange syrup and orange ripple ice-cream. Louisa started working for Sodexo


three years ago, and her commitment to delivering high standards every day has resulted in her being promoted three times in as many years. Last year Louisa’s talent also saw her represent the UK at WorldSkills in Leipzig and take the Rising Star Craft prize in Sodexo UK and Ireland’s annual Star Awards. “It’s absolutely amazing to win, and it


was really unexpected as I only arrived half an hour before because of traffic,” she says. “I was a bit flustered at the start but once I got into the 90 minutes I really enjoyed the pressure because


it gives me drive, and then it was nice to stand back at the end to see that I’d achieved what I wanted to achieve.” Louisa wins a fantastic prize of


work experience with Alyn Williams at Michelin-starred restaurant The Westbury and a study trip to France. “Louisa performed fantastically


well and is a highly deserving winner. To perform the way she did in a very challenging competition environment, and at one of the most prestigious culinary events in the UK, is testament not only to her vast talent, but also to the support she has been able to call upon during the competition,” says David Mulcahy, Sodexo craft and food development director and organiser of the Sodexo Chef of the Year competition. “All our competitors are great ambassadors for Sodexo and the industry.” Runner-up Tom Beauchamp from


Sodexo Prestige in Scotland and third- placed Lloyd Walker from Sodexo Corporate Services will also go on the France trip, which will include visits to the champagne vineyards, Paris markets, dinner at some of the French capital’s top restaurants and a visit to Le Nôtre cookery school. Also at Hotelympia, the Sodexo


culinary team collected a silver medal in La Parade des Chefs, the working restaurant competition. Working in glass-enclosed kitchens, two teams batle it out on each day, preparing and cooking lunch for 100 paid-for covers.


Image © anissat / Freeimages


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