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Ready, Steady, Cook for Christmas!

Article posted: Dec 08, 2009 by Sqn Ldr Wilson

Ready, Steady, Cook! These were the words that set 126 (City of Derby) Squadron off on a night of culinary creation for Christmas. The cadets from Derby cooked up a 3 course meal in under 2 hours, all under the watchful eye of two full time RAF chefs.

Cadets from the squadron split into 4 teams to cook up a 3 course meal from a budget of just £15. Then using only camping stoves and pans borrowed from parent’s kitchens and larders, the cadets chopped, boiled, fried and whisked up a meal fit for any Officers Mess or top restaurant.

Following the success of the Christmas and Summer Masterchef competitions last year, 2 top chefs from the RAF were keen to return to the squadron to judge the competition. WO Steve Owen-Browne and his colleague from RAF Digby marked all aspects of the competition, from food preparation and hygiene to the final tasting session. They were highly impressed with the standard of food that was presented on tables that were decorated with a festive theme.

The winning team on the night was commanded by Cadet Flight Sergeant Sam Woodward. His team served a fantastic winter starter followed by a main course of sirloin steak in a Marsala sauce. The steak was cooked to perfection and served with new potatoes and French beans. The meal was rounded off by a mouth watering homemade dessert.

Other dishes presented to the judges included an authentic Indian chicken curry and a Jerk chicken served on a bed of rice. The chefs from the RAF said that the cadets should be very proud. The chefs were extremely impressed by the standard of dishes that were produced with such limited equipment.

Flt Sgt Woodward, in charge of the winning team said, “Masterchef is my favourite flight competition. This is my last year as a cadet so I wanted to win more than ever. I had been practising the main course for several weeks and I think the practice paid off.”

The winning flight members were all presented with a RAF hat and lanyard. The runners up were presented with a RAF notebook and pen. Sqn Ldr Ian Marshall, Officer Commanding 126 Squadron said, “The Masterchef competition is extremely popular with our cadets. A lot of them have a real flare for cooking. For us, Masterchef also signifies the start of our Christmas competition nights. It’s followed by a Christmas Crystal Maze challenge and a Christmas Quiz evening.”