Apprentice chefs at Sidford’s The Salty Monk cook their way to trio of awards

Joe Fowler's bronze winning Thai-inspired noodle dish

Joe Fowler's bronze winning Thai-inspired noodle dish - Credit: Archant

Former Sidmouth College and King’s School students bag gold and bronze prizes in cookery competition

A pair of young chefs, who are honing their craft at an award-winning Sid Valley restaurant, have bagged three awards at a prestigious culinary competition.

Stephen Foster, 17, and Joe Fowler, 19, impressed the judges to come away with one gold and two bronze prizes from the Major Chefs Series in Paignton earlier this month.

Stephen, a former student at The King’s School, bagged a gold award with a technically-difficult lemon soufflé.

Joe, who used to attend Sidmouth College, won two bronze awards in the street food category with a Thai-inspired chicken noodle dish and a selection of handmade breads.


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The competition brief had the added challenge of tasking entrants with making their dishes sustainable, so Joe utilised a hollowed-out butternut squash, which was an element in the dish, as an eco-friendly bowl.

The pair are apprentices at The Salty Monk, in Sidford, and are able to trial their dishes on paying customers under the supervision of head chef and owner Andy Witheridge.

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Andy said: “Their dishes go on as specials, and afterwards they go and speak with the customers to get some feedback, so it’s great for their confidence.”

“They did really well at the competition. It’s great to see all their hard work pay off.”

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