Maddison cooks up a storm at AUSTAFE final

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A second-year commercial cookery apprentice at Peninsula Private Hospital has taken out the annual Chisholm AUSTAFE regional final competition at Chisholm’s Frankston campus.

Langwarrin’s Maddison Cochrane, who competed as a first-year apprentice last year, won Section 2 of the competition on her way to being named overall winner and will join Cameron Peirce (Section 1 winner), Daniel Rischitelli (Section 3) and Rebecca Raphael (Section 4) at the state finals in Melbourne this month. There they will vie for the chance to compete at the national finals in Canberra in a bid to be crowned National Champion Apprentice Chef. Bianca Ross, Naomi Cheeseman, Dale Villella and Ruling Huang were runners-up in sections 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively at the regional final on Tuesday, August 7.

The competition was divided into four sections for first, second and third-year apprentices, with Section 4 for cooks and culinary students. All competitors were required to produce an omelette, while Section 2 competitors also had to produce an entrée made from a boned chicken and those in sections 3 and 4 had to make a sweet based on yoghurt.

Commercial cookery trainer and event organiser Michael Villani said: “We have been running the AUSTAFE competition for 12 years. It allows students the opportunity to hone their professional skills under pressure with industry judges. Competitions like these are critical for students to be prepared for the pressure of industry. Students participating in the competition are potentially putting themselves forward as the next generation of industry frontrunners. It really is a confidence booster for students who compete. The day couldn’t be run without the support of sponsors like Gemini Catering, Krio Krush, Prestige Foods, and Aquanas Seafoods.”

Keep an eye on Mornington Peninsula Magazine for the results of the AUSTAFE state and national finals.