A YOUNG chef has tasted success after reaching the semi finals of a national cookery competition.

Darlington student Hannah Gorman travelled to Sheffield for the penultimate round of Future Chef, a national contest designed to encourage the next generation of cooks.

Although the Longfield School girl just missed out on a place in the final she performed brilliantly in the 90-minute cook off, according to her mentor Darlington College catering tutor Rebecca Dougill.

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As well as producing a menu which included stuffed chicken with feta cheese and spinach and sea salt and caramel chocolate fondant, the pair worked on presentation and knife skills in the run up to the semi final.

Ms Dougill said: “She did really well. She has natural talent and flair and is very focussed and driven. I’m sure she will be successful in whatever she decides to do with her life.”

Miss Gorman said: “I would love to reach the final one day and plan to go to college to study catering.”

She dreams of following in the footsteps of former Longfield School student Ruth Hansom who won the competition and is now an apprentice with the celebrate chef Michelle Roux Junior Miss Gorman continues to hone her cooking skills at school and is studying AS food technology.

Her teacher Sally Connor said: “Competitions like these provide invaluable experience outside of the curriculum and offer a taste of life in the industry.

“Hannah has taken advantage of the opportunities and shown determination to succeed at the highest level.”