THE HEAT will soon be on in the kitchen for some of Leamington’s best amateur chefs and bakers.
The town’s two day Food and Drink Festival is set to take place in the Pump Room Gardens over the weekend of September 10 and 11.
And those who feel they could be the next Mary Berry or Paul Hollywood are being invited to showcase their skills in the Home Cook of the Year and Leamington Bake Off competitions.
Leamington Bake Off will take centre stage on Saturday with a panel of experts judging the best homemade cakes and bakes.
As well as the Chocolate Masterpiece, Sweet Tart and children’s categories, a new challenge – the Decorated Leamington Celebration Cake – will see bakers enter cakes themed around the town.
And on Sunday organisers will be on the hunt for the Home Cook of the Year with competitors under pressure to cook a lamb-based main live in front of the crowds.
Peter Allen, chair of Leamington butchers Aubrey Allen, came up with the idea for the competition.
He said: “Anything we can do that gets the community interested in quality food and understanding why it’s important to use quality ingredients is good for not just the community, but also our business and the wider industry.
“The Food and Drink Festival is a fantastic family-friendly event and simple but authentic competitions such as the Home Cook of the Year do a great job of bringing the community together – it’s always great fun for spectators and contestants.”
Stephanie Kerr, executive director of BID Leamington, which organises the festival, said: “The Leamington Food and Drink Festival is now one of the biggest and most popular dates in the town’s calendar, attracting visitors from far and wide.
“As well as raising the profile of the diverse cuisine on offer in the town’s bars and restaurants, the festival also provides a perfect opportunity to showcase some of our community’s home-grown talent too.
“Both competitions attracted huge interest last year and we’re sure this year will be no different, so for those who think they could challenge Nigella Lawson’s talent, we urge you to enter either of the challenges to truly put your skills to the test.”
Visit www.leamingtonfoodfestival.co.uk, www.aubreyallenleamington.co.uk/ThisMonth and www.sweet-as.co.uk to enter or for further details.