Make your mind up says celebrity Baker

Cheryl Baker supports the Young Cooks contest.

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A star of stage and screen has joined the call for entries to Young Cooks – the annual cookery contest for schools and families – before the November 7 deadline.

Singer and television presenter Cheryl Baker is backing the competition which aims to develop a passion for cooking and healthy eating among Kent’s youngsters.

Cheryl, who shot to fame with the pop group Bucks Fizz, is an Honorary Patron of the KM Charity Team – the organisers of the Young Cooks contest.

She said: “I presented a children’s cookery programme for five years in the nineties called Eggs ‘n’ Baker, which encouraged children to learn to cook. I wholeheartedly support and encourage children to cook.”

“Having appeared in Celebrity MasterChef a few years ago, I understand the pressure of cooking in a competition but I am sure the children and families invited to the finals of Young Cooks will love the experience,” she added.

To enter, pupils must prepare a tasty and wholesome meal to a fixed budget and upload their recipe details plus a photograph of the dish to the Young Cooks website. School staff, parents, or guardians are welcome to assist pupils with completing the simple online form.

The contest is open to children and teenagers aged six to 19 years and the three competition categories are Primary School, Secondary School, and Families for adult-and-child pairings. Entries are judged on presentation, creativity, healthy ingredients, and knowledge of locally-grown Kentish produce.

Pupils submitting the best entries will earn their places in an exciting MasterChef-style final at East Kent College plus a goody bag packed with cooking-related prizes. Finalists will prepare their menus in a professional kitchen for a panel of judges in a bid to win a share of the £500 prize money.

The judging panel will include representatives from Macknade Fine Foods, Golding Vision (part of Golding Homes), Whole School Meals, Orbit, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, The Dog at Wingham, Chequers Kitchen Cookery School, Licensing Consultancy Services, The Southern Co-operative, Brakes, and Kent Catering Service.

Event organiser Maxine Tarquini said: “This competition is a great way to encourage an interest in cookery and help children to learn about nutrition and healthy living. The Young Cooks website is packed with information including previous entries for inspiration – and schools can request free promotional leaflets to issue to local families or pupils.”

Visit www.YoungCooks.org.uk to enter before the deadline of midnight on Wednesday, November 7.

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