Fenstanton student impresses TV chef James Martin with her cooking skills

Ellie with James Martin.

Ellie with James Martin. - Credit: Archant

Fourteen-year-old Ellie Peters of Fenstanton, has won the regional culinary cook-off in a competition to find some of the nation’s most promising young gastronomic gurus.

Ellie's dish.

Ellie's dish. - Credit: Archant

Ellie and fellow Kimbolton School pupil Annabel Laliberte, also 14, were selected for the cook-off following a national search, spearheaded by celebrity chef James Martin, of BBC’s Saturday Kitchen Live.

The two teenagers, whose dishes proved so inspiring, were among the regional finalists but it was Ellie who beat off stiff competition in Cambridge to clinch the regional title in The Red Tractor Make it With Mince Challenge.

Now Ellie, who won a touch screen tablet, chef’s whites and kitchen equipment vouchers worth £200, gets to have a stab at the national title with her winning dish beef and chorizo stew with rosemary dumplings. If she wins Ellie will get to spend a day with the TV chef in London to see the filming of his show, meet the guests and chefs.

Mr Martin said: “Our finalists have been just brilliant this year and Ellie has done superbly well to be named our Cambridge regional winner. Her recipe stood apart from the other finalists because it was a unique combination of flavours and a really different approach to cooking with beef and lamb – and of course it tasted great too.

“Ellie really is cooking beyond her years and would give some of my chefs a run for their money!”

Organised by EBLEX, a division of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, the main aim of the competition is to inspire young people to get hands on cooking experience while educating them about the importance of good nutrition.