Kerry Student Wins Apprentice Chef Competition

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Seventeen year old Padraic Randles from Pobalscoil Inbhear Scéine, Kenmare, who won carried  the Supreme Apprentice Chef title for 2017 with Michael Murphy of Flogas Ireland. Photo by Domnick Walsh

A KENMARE secondary school student was winner of a culinary competition in the IT Tralee yesterday.

Students from across Munster travelled to the ITT for the final service in the 2016/2017 Flogas Ireland and Failte Ireland sponsored Schools Apprentice Chef Programme.

Seventeen year old Pádraic Randles from Pobalscoil Inbhear Scéine, Kenmare, Co Kerry carried off the Supreme Apprentice Chef title for 2017.

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As the winner, Pádraic, who comes from a dairy farm in Kenmare, walked away with a prize package that included a set of professional knives, €1000 equipment for his school, Pobalscoil Inbhear Scéine in Kenmare, a year’s subscription to Easyfood Magazine and a professional food styling session at Easyfood Magazine HQ this summer.  In addition, the specially commissioned Supreme Apprentice Chef perpetual trophy was presented to Padráic by Michael Murphy, sales representative for Flogas Ireland.

It was his second year to enter the competition and he won for his dish of marinated pan fried Skeaghanore duck fillet, potato rosti, spring roll with celeriac and cabbage, carrot purée, toasted hazelnuts and sweet potato crisps.

All finalists – including Niamh McMahon from Mercy Mounthawk – experienced an authentic restaurant environment in the kitchens at IT Tralee and served dishes which ranged from “green tea smoked chicken with cauliflower rice, apple & fennel slaw” to “pistachio, courgette and lemon cake” to a panel of discerning judges.

This is the fifth year of the Apprentice Chef Programme which was established by Mark Doe of Just Cooking Cookery School and Mark Murphy, senior lecturer in Culinary Arts at IT Tralee.

Co-founder Mark Doe said, “Since the programme’s inception in 2012, we have delivered a series of demonstrations and workshops to over 2000 students attending schools in Kerry, Limerick, Cork, Tipperary, Waterford, Kilkenny and Wexford.  Our objective is to promote the importance of healthy eating to enhance physical and mental wellbeing, encourage young people to consider a culinary career to help combat the current chef shortage in Ireland and improve their self confidence.  Year on year we are overwhelmed by the high standard of the dishes produced by the students and we look forward to building on the programme’s success to take it to national level.”

For more information on the Apprentice Chef and

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