Jun 1 2012 by Stuart Wilson, Ayrshire Post (main ed)
CORONATION Chicken may be tasty, but it’s had its day.
That day was 1952, to be exact, when the dish commemorated the crowning of the Queen.
Now, as she prepares to celebrate her Diamond Jubilee on the throne, schoolkids in East Ayrshire have been busy in the kitchen.
Their brief was to create a modern recipe that would mark the big occasion – and stand the test of time.
And one budding chef did just that, scooping top prize in the council’s Design a Dish competition.
The winner was aptly-named eight-year-old, Ava Cook, of Mauchline Primary School, with her Crispy Diamond Jubilee Fishcakes.
Ava designed her meal using fish from Scotland, cheese from England, leeks from Wales and potatoes from Ireland to represent all the countries of Britain.
The rules of the contest were that the food had to look appealing, tasty and imaginative; and the recipe, for four people, had to be supplied along with the cooking method and the dish had to be a main course.
Ava scooped £250 of cooking equipment for her school – and a fun cooking day at The Cook School Scotland for herself and 11 friends.
All of the finalists’ recipes are being pro-duced in a set of recipe cards and to let other youngsters have a taste, Onsite Services will serve up some of the winning dishes at lunchtime on the days that schools are celebrating the Diamond Jubilee.
Jim Millar of Cook School Scotland headed the panel of judges who put the young cooks through their paces.
He said: “It was a very difficult task to select winners – there were just so many brilliant recipes submitted.”
And council executive, Graham Short, added: “Over 600 children entered this competition and we thoroughly enjoyed reading their very colourful and creative recipes.
“Many included drawings and photographs and demonstrated the wealth of skill and imagination of our pupils.”
Councillor Iain Linton, spokesperson for lifelong learning, said: “Food is an important part of every celebration and our school meals team wanted to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and encourage school children to celebrate food.
“The school meals service has developed a strong reputation for using the best local ingredients.
“Skilled catering managers cook fresh food every day and serve nutritious, healthy meals.
“With the support of The Cook School Scotland, we gave pupils the opportunity to get cooking.”