My rate – a taste of classical training with Le Cordon Bleu @ Mark Greenaway

At the start of 2016 I made a promise to myself –  I will try and get out a bit more.  When I say get out I don’t mean at soft play or the swing park (that is a given for the next 5 or so years).  I will get out more for adult only chat and embrace my passion of food, fine wine and cocktails without the nappy bag.

I used to know every hot spot in Edinburgh and then Glasgow (Account Manager at Blythwood Square = frequent wining and dining).  It  was a bit of a wake up call when friends up from London recently asked me where is good to go and my mind drew a blank.  Help me – baby brain is real.  We had a night away last weekend which was fab BUT our meal was a SERIOUS let down.  My readers know me for always being brutally honest – I have no shame yet I also have no desire to shame others.  It might have just been a bad night.    I only want to write about the experiences I really rate.  I will rate and rarely slate (unless it is absolutely necessary).  Parents don’t get many nights off – I don’t have time for bad meals or bad service.  End of.

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My rate for this week goes out to Le Cordon Bleu, the world famous culinary, wine and management school, who came up from London to do some classical training.  This took place at the gorgeous Three AA Rosette restaurant Mark Greenaway, Edinburgh.  Mark was kind enough to point out his favourite tables to me in the restaurant which have been noted for future reservations.  I am a sucker for a modern Scottish menu with a twist.  I love his enthusiasm for our Scottish produce and why shouldn’t he be excited?

A seriously amazing UK Scholarship Award is up for grabs and Mark has partnered up with Le Cordon Bleu to help reward one very lucky person.  Clearly they will be passionate, driven and raring to hit the ground running.  This opportunity is worth over £35,000 and includes –

  • A place on the Diplôme de Pâtisserie
  • A place on the Diploma in Culinary Management
  • 15 month accommodation with urbanest
  • An internship under the guidance of chef Clare Smith

Le Cordon Bleu scholarship is open to everyone who is a resident in the UK and at least 18 years old – tempted? I am! Mark comments:

“At a time when the shortage of skilled chefs in the UK is worsening, an initiative such as Le Cordon Bleu Scholarship Award is very welcome. It is an honour to be involved with Le Cordon Bleu and I look forward to an exciting campaign.”

After that bad meal last weekend I fear he is correct – thank goodness for Le Cordon Bleu .  Personally, I loved getting a taster of their classical training style made to look completely effortless.  I am not the most artistically gifted person but check this? Albeit I needed some guidance from the extremely patient chef.

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We started with a ball of marzipan. It was an eye opener for me, it just goes to show that with a little hard work and the right attitude something beautiful can be created.  My usual baking at home involves whipping up something simple like cheese scones with my 3 year old.

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In less than an hour Le Cordon Bleu have taught me that I can raise the bar. It can be all too easy to make excuses such as “I don’t have the time” or “I am not artistic enough”.  They have given me the desire and confidence to step things up a notch in the kitchen.  If they can have that impact in such a short space of time, I can only imagine what their scholarship will offer.  They reiterated that the winner will not necessarily need to have loads of experience. They are looking for my favourite word – passion.  I have complete faith that these guys will create an award winning chef and when they do – I want to know which restaurant they are cooking in!

Applicants are invited to:

  • Upload a short video clip introducing the panel to their county at: ukscholarship.cordonbleu.edu
  • Complete the online application form
  • Post a picture of their favourite British cake on Instagram tagged LeCordonBleuLondon with the #allIneedispassion
  • Attend the regional tour with Mark Greenaway and Master Chefs from Le Cordon Bleu at Mark Greenaway’s restaurant on the 18th February. Attendees should register their attendance by e-mailing cdear@cordonbleu.edu as spaces are limited.

Applications will close at midnight on April 3, and successful applicants will subsequently be invited for the semi-finals in their region.

The last stage of the competition will take place at Le Cordon Bleu London, where the winner will be chosen by a panel of Le Cordon Bleu’s world-renowned Master Chefs and lecturers in June.

Good luck to all those who enter and may the best person win x

Ps -Tip for parents-  marzipan makes for a much safer play dough.  What’s the worst that could happen if they eat it? We all need a sugar rush sometimes.

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