The title of the Huletts Sweet Young Chef 2018 goes to our very own Gabriella Ferreira! Congratulations! After submitting her recipe to earn a spot in the finals, Gabriella and 3 fellow finalists were tasked with preparing their creations during a live demonstration at the finals, which took place at the INFO CHEF AFRICA conference at the Emperors Palace on 26 July.
The competition was open to all culinary students from across South Africa, aged 18 to 25 years, who could showcase the endless possibilities of baking and cooking with sugar.
Each entrant had to submit one original recipe, together with a photograph and costing, of an innovative dessert. The recipe had to utilise at least three products in the Huletts range and consist of at least five components. Read more on the competition rules here.
Huletts Sweet Young Chef 2018 – Winning Dish
Fallen Apple Semi-Fredo Cardamom Cheesecake Dome
Gabriella essentially wanted her dessert to look and feel as if an apple had just fallen off a tree with autumn leaves around it, moss on the forest floor (candy floss), and fine walnut praline crumble being the golden soil it falls on.
The desert consisted of 16 components namely:
- Semi-Frado cheesecake dome infused with ground cardamon
- Fresh fig flesh center
- Cardamon Swiss roll sponge layer
- Golden syrup soaking liquid
- Green white chocolate mirror glaze
- Granny Smith Apple chips
- Apple chip base
- Chocolate twig
- Chocolate leaves
- Fresh apple spheres soaked in apple sours liquor
- Walnut praline crumble (roughly chopped)
- Walnut praline crumble (finely chopped)
- Apple skin dust
- Fresh figs cut up
- Gold shimmer blown onto the dome
- Small bunches of Candy floss
The flavours in this well balanced and unique dish complimented each other beautifully. It was extremely important to Gabriella that the judges were able to experience each texture and component on the dish. From the smooth and semi frozen cheesecake with an almost jam like fresh fig centre, to the thin moist sponge layer, to the crisp apple chip base, the thin layer of mirror glaze which had a jelly like texture, the crunch from the roughly chopped walnut praline crumble around the bottom of the dome, the snap and smooth texture of the chocolate leaves, the fresh taste from the apple spheres, the sourness from the apple sours, the crunch from the apple skin dust, the fresh taste of the fig on the plate, the sandy like texture of the finely chopped walnut praline to the texture of the candy floss which brought it altogether.
Gabriella explains how terrified she was to enter and that if it weren’t for the chef lecturers at CTIA believing in her and pushing her she might never have entered and ultimately gained this invaluable experience. She explains that her chef lecturers helped her every step of the way leading up to the finals, from improving on time and technique, to assisting her to believing in herself and gaining the confidence she needed to go out there to finally claiming the tittle at the event.
“The thrill and excitement coupled with the fear of having to cook in front of people, all to the announcing of the winner was definitely the best moment of my life so far!”
Chefs Training and Innovation Academy ensures all students taking part in competitions are well prepared. It is important to be prepared for the things that could go wrong as well as having a checklist to ensure that all equipment supplied at the station is working on the day.
This was Gabriella’s first ever competition and CTIA is super proud of her achievement! We knew you could do it all along!
If you are interested in unlocking your culinary creativity have a look at all our available courses here.