Streets ahead

The award ceremony of the Scottish Borders Junior Chef's Challenge competition took place today at Harmony House in Melrose. First place went to The County Hotel in Selkirk's Johnnie Streets.
The award ceremony of the Scottish Borders Junior Chef's Challenge competition took place today at Harmony House in Melrose. First place went to The County Hotel in Selkirk's Johnnie Streets.
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Johnny Streets, above, was 25 and a commis chef at the County Hotel, Selkirk, when he was unanimously judged the winner of last year’s competition. He started there as a kitchen porter and has been studying for a catering SVQ.

“I do everything from cleaning to preparation to services and sending out the food to customers.”

Johnny recently moved to Burt’s in his home town, Melrose.

In the concluding cook-off, very few points divided the dishes of the three finalists, Johnny plus Shaun Fagan of Marmion’s Brasserie in Melrose, and Susan Kay of Carfraemill near Lauder, the survivors from the eight young people who entered the competition.

“I would have been happy for any of the three chefs to win, they were all so excellently skilled and every dish was truly a pleasure to eat,” said judge Sandy Neil.

“What impressed me most about Johnny were his ingenious technical skills, and ability to nail flavour bang on the head. His velvety pear and onion veloute, and tomato consommé, I could have eaten for forever and a day. His stunning pudding kept me interested in every forkful, and left me puzzling: how did he do that?”

Photograph: Stuart Cobley