Competition elects young ‘chef’ from Coimbra to European competition

The Intermunicipal Community of the Region of Coimbra and the School of Hospitality and Tourism today launched a competition that will select the young chef who will represent the country at the European Young Chef Award.

The winner of the regional competition, in addition to representing Portugal in the European competition in Greece in October, will also be designated as the Young Ambassador of the Region of Coimbra – European Region of Gastronomy 2021, announced today the organization.

Registration for the regional competition runs until May 3 (through the site), with the submission of the concept, technical sheet and history associated with the proposed meal (entry, main course and dessert). The finalists will be announced on May 10 and the tests will be held on the 24th, Paulo Morais Vaz, director of the Coimbra School of Hospitality and Tourism, Coimbra.

Competitors must be between 18 and 26 years of age, living in the municipalities of the Intermunicipal Community (CIM) of the Coimbra Region and maybe kitchen or professional students who have completed their training for less than a year.

For Paulo Morais Vaz, this contest aims to “value professionals and the gastronomic heritage of the region“, stressing the need to bet on tradition and innovation, through the use of culinary techniques and products from the territory.

During the press conference, the president of the CIM of the Region of Coimbra, João Ataíde, highlighted the potential of Portuguese chefs who have “a great adaptability“, as well as the Portuguese gastronomy, which, in addition to transforming “dishes poor in authentic delicacies, assimilated flavors of Portuguese presence in the seven corners of the world.

We have to value this activity and the sector has to pay [the chefs] in a dignified way. It’s no longer a cheap time to pay,” he said.

As criteria for the qualification of the regional winner, there are characteristics such as the originality of the dishes, the history behind the food, the complexity of the recipe, the technical innovation and the innovation against the traditional recipe and the connection to the territory, among others.

The European Young Chef Award is organized by the International Institute of Gastronomy, Art and Tourism.

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