To participate, you must be in full-time employment as a chef in the United Kingdom and be aged 22 or above, but no older than 30 years of age on 1st February 2020. For example a competitor can have their 30th birthday on 1st February 2020 and be eligible but if one day older they will be ineligible (ie. If your 30th birthday falls one day earlier, on the 31st January 2020, or before, you will be too old).
You have until midnight on Friday 31st January 2020 to submit a recipe to serve four people using:
One whole fresh MSC labelled hake, gutted, weighing anywhere between 1.6kg – 1.8kg (maximum 2kg) and 600g live whole grooved carpet shell / palourde clams (ruditapes decussatus); together plated with two ‘simple’ or ‘composed’ garnishes/accompaniments. One of them must include leeks and the other to be a garnish/accompaniment of the applicant’s choice. One of these can be served separately if preferred. A sauce must accompany the dish.
Chairman Alain Roux said: “This year, the competition is showcasing MSC certified hake, a beautiful, sustainably sourced fish local to our shores in the UK. As usual, we are setting a deceptively simple task, using three ingredients whilst testing core skills to the limit. The key to success will depend on precise judgement to ensure a subtle balance of flavours whilst taking care not to overcook any element. I can’t wait to see what our ingenious competitors produce for us this year”.
Chairman Michel Roux Jr said: “Hake is such a delicate fish, it needs the utmost care and attention when cooking so I’m really looking forward to see what the chefs come up with. Clams and leeks are the perfect accompaniment but there is lots of scope for bold flavours with the sauce and the second garnish.”
The judges will select the best 18 recipes from those submitted. These chefs will be invited to cook their dish and a ‘mystery box’ dessert challenge at regional finals to be held in Birmingham and London on Thursday 19th March 2020.