Guest chefs join students to cook up fine dining feast Trafford College
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Guest chefs join students to cook up fine dining feast

Hospitality students had the opportunity to learn from two of the industry’s leading names for the latest guest chef evening at the College’s award-winning restaurant.

Simon Toft from The Dining Room in Abersoch and Gareth Stevenson from the five-star Palé Hall Hotel in Bala, worked with students on a gourmet seven-course menu for their eagerly anticipated guest chef evening on May 2.

Gareth has extensive experience working in luxury hotel restaurants, including being part of the launch team for Michael Caines restaurant at ABode. He’s also worked in Michelin-starred kitchens, such as Gordon Ramsey’s ‘Maze’, while former Trafford College student Simon, runs the popular bistro The Dining Room, which has a distinguished AA Rosette.

The guest chef evenings offer a fantastic opportunity for students to gain valuable experience, forge links with renowned chefs and restaurateurs, and hone their own cooking, presentation and customer service skills.

Simon and Gareth worked with the industry’s next generation of young chefs to create dishes including dashi rolled crab cannelloni, salt baked beetroot with whipped curd, and squab pigeon with Parisian gnocchi, sharing culinary tips, techniques and expertise along the way.

Simon said: “The evening was great fun, the students, as always, are another level. They listen and most importantly ask loads of questions. Gareth and I were blown away by the evening, and of course the feedback from the guests.”

Gareth added: “This is the first time I’ve worked on something like this in a college and the facilities in the training kitchens at Trafford College are amazing.”

Student Dan Mills, who is studying Level 3 Professional Chef, said: “I really enjoy the guest chef nights because it allows me to learn new cooking skills and plating methods.

“Guest chefs always have interesting recipes and use a variety of different foods that we don’t always get access to at College. I also enjoy listening to them talk about their career and how they have achieved success.”

Matthew Shaw, Head of Curriculum for Hospitality, said: “We pride ourselves on teaching students to the highest culinary standards. Our guest chef nights provide the ideal opportunity for learners to put their knowledge to the test while developing wider skills shared by industry experts. It is also inspiring to see our young chefs produce food to the highest level while working with such professionalism.”

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    Trafford College is a leading provider of education and training in Greater Manchester. With a £50m investment in world-class facilities, an innovative approach to learning and exceptional links with some of the UK’s most significant employers, students are given a platform from which they can achieve their full potential.