Cookery Courses London News

Just desserts for those brave enough to enter dessert competition

The competition for entry into the Mõvenpick Gourmet Dessert Chef is well under way and the deadline for your chance to be considered as Mõvenpick Gourmet Dessert Chef of the Year is fast approaching. Allan Pickett, the head chef at London’s Canary Wharf Plateau, who will be on the judging panel for the live cook off event alongside a whole host of the industry’s most illustrious names, is urging more budding chefs who are perhaps hiding their light under a bushel to come forward and risk showcasing their culinary prowess for the chance to win a cookery course extraordinaire and stay at Mõvenpick’s Swiss home.

Launched in association with the Craft Guild of Chefs, the competition is not just about raising a classic dessert from scratch but also to show the hospitality trade what it’s missing out on as almost four fifths of orders from pub and restaurant menus do not, at present, contain a dessert. With a three course meal constituting main, side and a choice of either starter or dessert, there is a very real sense within The Guild that the trade is missing a trick or two by not being positive about promoting the sweets available as a healthy, enjoyable alternative to the starter as part of any fixed three-course meal.

The closing date for entries to the competition is only a fortnight away (1st May) and whilst many, many UK cookery courses include programs and one-off cookery classes for desserts and patisseries, the second call, if you like, for competitors in this year’s competition would suggest that they perhaps have not had as many entrants as they would have anticipated.

It would seem that the high glitz and glamour of the brand and its website – it’s perhaps one of the funkiest, elegant websites I’ve ever seen and I research a lot of websites – may be putting people off entering. I’m almost tempted to sign up for a cookery course myself to learn how to make ice-cream using

  • 2 x 125ml tubs Smart Price Black Cherry yoghurt,
  • 1 x Double Elmlea Cream (284ml/½ pint), and
  • 2 heaped tea-spoons (20 mg) of Smart Price instant chocolate powder
    • total cost = less than a quid, serves two

– a Black Forest Gateaux meal in a glass! I’m sure there’s a market for that in an ice-cream, if only I knew the conversion from yoghurt to the frozen stuff, I’d be on my way.

I might just get my Ninja out and crush some ice with those ingredients and see how it turns out. And no pinching this recipe, you guys! You read it here, first…

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Cookery Course News

Mõvenpick ice cream competition – chefs required

We’ve written about a couple of cookery courses for creating desserts on this blog over the last few months. Have any of you joined or participated in any of them? Or are you a natural born or already-educated masterchef when it comes to dreaming and serving up sweets after the main course? Specifically, ice cream?

Well if you do do ice cream well, and we’re talking state of the art creative flair with a deep understanding of natural ingredients, you may be interested in this little peach of a competition being hosted by Mõvenpick, the luxury ice cream makers from Switzerland, and The Graft Guild of Chefs. Not only are they on the lookout for a talented chef whose culinary prowess can bolster the launch of their new ice cream flavours, but they are positively urging contestants to enter the competition.

With the renowned dessert chefs from around the world expected to put their names forward, this may not be categorically classed as a cookery course per se, but even if you get through to the cook off yet don’t win, we’ll sure you’ll learn from the combined experience of competition and being in the company of professional chefs along the way. The first prize being an unforgettable weekend trip for two to the Swiss home of Mõvenpick.

The premise of the Mõvenpick Gourmet Dessert Chef of the Year cookery competition is to create something spectacular from Mõvenpick flavoured ice creams. The brand may not be so familiar on the average high street here in the UK, although they did win the Gold Award for their Grand Marnier flavour at the British Food Federation awards for Best New Dessert category in the frozen section, but that’s because this brand is pretty much exclusive as far as ice cream goes. A lot of their marketing and public awareness comes through travelling cooking demonstrations – you may think that a strange association with ice cream, but they do it in a Swiss style that I’ve seen no other ice cream creator exude.

The firm does have a retail side, but you’re more likely to find its recipes on sale in restaurants and boutiques in cities rather than your local supermarket. Created for sale in restaurants only, the brand has been around since 1948, with Nestlé buying the rights to its name almost ten years ago, in 2003; its philosophy of no artificial flavours or colouring remains to this day and everything about the brand, from its 2009 advertising campaign featuring a monochrome Rachel Clark contrasting against the vivid 1080HD colours of its ice creams to its smooth and elegant website, smacks of quality.

The two new flavours being promoted alongside the cookery competition are Fior di Latte and Apricot Sorbet, the latest Mõvenpick goût en vogue. A hint from Julia Jones, customer marketing head at Mõvenpick: the Swiss ice cream manufacturer continues its commitment to gastronomic excellence through creative innovation and natural resources; this competition is a chance for professional chefs to whip up an “irresistible gourmet dessert”. So, there you have it – is there an ice cream masterchef in you?

Oh, and there is the small matter of the runners up prize – a day at Le Manoir Aux Quat’Saisons to partake in a patisserie and desserts full day cookery course.  What are you waiting for?