Waitrose and pea industry search for UK’s next top young chef


TV Chef Rachel Green with budding young chefs

The Yes Peas! campaign, which represents the UK pea vining sector, has joined forces with Waitrose to launch a nationwide cooking competition to find the country’s next top young chef.

With support from chefs, media and farmers across the UK and with exciting prizes on offer from Waitrose, children aged four to 12 are being invited to create a delicious dish using Britain’s favourite family vegetable, the humble pea!

Launched with the help of TV chef Rachel Green in her Lincolnshire demonstration kitchen, the competition is challenging budding young chefs to develop a healthy and delicious recipe which includes the Great British Pea as star of the show.

Rachel Green, Yes Peas! campaign ambassador, said: “With schools, families and community groups across the country getting involved, we’re looking forward to discovering the country’s next Young Pea Chef of the Year.

“The amount of peas grown in the UK each year is equivalent to about 70,000 football pitches and no matter the season, freshly frozen peas are available throughout the year. Frozen peas are rich in protein, carbohydrate and fibre and low in fat, as well as providing an excellent source of Vitamin A and C, which are important in building strong immune systems. We’re looking forward to showcasing this versatile vegetable, whilst finding a future star chef along the way!”

Michael Simpson-Jones, Waitrose Frozen Food Buying Manager, said, “Waitrose are proud to be sponsoring the Young Pea Chef of the Year competition. Peas are not only a great source of vitamin C, protein and fibre but they are incredibly tasty and versatile too. We hope the competition inspires budding young chefs to get creative in the kitchen with this great British vegetable.”

The competition will close for entries on 12 February 2016, when a panel of judges, including TV chef Rachel Green, Waitrose Frozen Foods Buying Manager, Michael Simpson-Jones, and representatives from Birds Eye and Pinguin Foods, will shortlist ten worthy Young Pea Chefs to go through to the final.

The finalist with the most votes will win cookery equipment worth £500 for their school from competition sponsor Waitrose. The winner and nine runners up will be featured in a Yes Peas! recipe book which will be distributed nationwide.

The competition is open to children aged 4-12. View full competition terms and conditions and how to enter online a twww.youngpeachef.co.uk.

For peas recipes, visit www.peas.org and www.waitrose.com/home/recipes.html.

Follow the competition on Twitter @YesPeas and use the hashtag #youngpeachef to find out about the budding Young Pea Chefs and share your thoughts on who deserves to be crowned Pea Chef of the Year 2016.