Culinary Academy Autumn Training Events

At English Lakes Hotels, we’re committed to getting the best out of our restaurant teams so that you and your loved ones can enjoy great food during your stay.

Culinary Academy Training Events

Our Culinary Academy in partnership with Kendal College provides a paid apprenticeship for trainee chefs keen to get on the hospitality career ladder.

And this autumn the latest group of our students have had a busy time learning from industry professionals and the Masterchefs of Great Britain.


Innovative Culinary Skills & The Latest Techniques

Our students recently took a trip down to Chesterfield for an interactive session in molecular gastronomy and food preparation using liquid Nitrogen, courtesy of fine food specialist MSK Ingredients.

This was part of their NVQ Level 3 attainment which tested their abilities to create more complex dishes with advanced culinary skills.

Molecular gastronomy can add genuine theatre to preparing a dish. The session was designed to get the students to think more creatively.

Working with liquid Nitrogen at super cold temperatures and with close supervision from MSK Ingredients’ expert chefs, in its purpose-built development kitchen, they soon mastered the art of making a ‘Bloody Mary’ cocktail contained within a frozen sphere of tomato juice.

They also looked at techniques such as Flambé ice cream, maintaining taste and texture whilst getting the dish to hold a specific shape without melting.

Trainee chef Jonny Marriot said: “MSK’s expert chefs showed us some amazing new techniques and recipe ideas which we can apply both in our culinary exams and at work. It was one of the best training days we’ve had.”


Inviting Master Chefs To Train Our Students In Cumbria

27 students from the Culinary Academy and Kendal College also came together for another training day to learn from award winning chocolatier Shona Sutherland and renowned local pastry chef Al Strong.

The training day organised with the Masterchefs of Great Britain included demonstrations on chocolate making skills and techniques, and the creation of a pastry based dessert.

Shona Sutherland, head chef of chocolate making and patisserie training company Taystful, showed the students how to create a multi-layered snack bar and demonstrated the intricacies of cocoa butter decoration and colouring of moulds.

Owner of Kendal based Nomadic Pastry, Al Strong, delivered a second masterclass with a hands-on session showing the students how to make one of his signature chocolate and blackcurrant desserts.

The group also learned about new industry insights and career development opportunities during a talk from the Chairman of the Masterchefs of Great Britain, George McIvor, a former CIS Development Chef of the Year.  The event was sponsored by Caterite and Bidfood UK and featured additional showcases from industry experts and suppliers.

Shona Sutherland has competed in the Culinary World Cup, winning an individual bronze medal in 2018 for her chocolate showpiece.  She has also competed as pastry chef for the Scotland team at the Culinary Olympics, with the team picking up two silver medals.

Al Strong established Nomadic Pastry in 2020.  Prior to that, he took his previous business, Macarons, from a market stall to a full retail and kitchen unit with a high turnover and popular wedding business. 

"This was a highly valuable educational event for the students and our thanks are due to all the masterchefs for giving up their time to make it all happen and help accelerate our trainees’ career development. Shona, Al and George all have a wealth of experience in the food and hospitality industries, both in the UK and in international markets, so it was really useful for the youngsters to have time with them."
Daniel Winstanley, The Culinary Academy Group Training & Development Chef

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