Center Parcs chefs get a taste for success in college kitchens

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A tailor-made chefs’ training programme has seen a year of hard work and creativity rewarded with a graduation gala dinner at West Nottinghamshire College’s fine dining restaurant recently.

Eleven chefs, who are employed at Center Parcs’ five short break villages across the UK, served up a three-course meal showcasing the culinary techniques they’ve learned on the aspire chef development programme’, which has been devised in partnership with the college.

Over the past twelve months, chefs from Sherwood Forest, Elveden Forest, Longleat Forest, Whinfell Forest and Woburn Forest have attended training sessions in the college’s industry-standard kitchens, to fine-tune their skills and techniques such as slow-cooking, shallow-frying, roasting and boiling, as well as updating their knowledge of food hygiene and preparation.

Jessica Foster, from Mansfield Woodhouse, who works at the Sports Café at Sherwood Forest, cooked a main course of blade of beef with horseradish mash and honey-roasted vegetables with a red wine jus.

She said: “I’ve learned lots of new skills on this programme and my confidence has soared. I can get quite nervous but I wanted to make sure everything was absolutely perfect. It’s very satisfying to see your dish go out.

“Coming to work in the college kitchens was a great experience. It’s been really good to see other chefs on the course and we’ve been able to learn from each other.”

College hospitality specialist Ryan Goward, said: “We are extremely proud of this group. Right from the start of their course they have pushed themselves to ensure that they built on their knowledge, skills and expertise.

“Congratulations to everyone and I wish them the best of luck in their futures. I hope they go on to inspire another group of chefs from Center Parcs and continue to grow in their own professional development.”