Chefs of the future learn to cook curry

Leicester Mercury 8 December 2009 by Terry Hall
Schoolchildren swapped the classroom for the kitchen when they learnt how to prepare Indian dishes.
Pupils from Meadow Primary School, in Wigston, spent yesterday morning at the Cuisine of India restaurant.
They were shown how to prepare and cook a meal of chicken tikka masala, with pilau rice, naan bread and onion bhajis.
The trip was organised as part of the school's cultural project to look at the differences between their home town of Wigston and India's capital city New Delhi.
Jacob Ridley-White, seven, whose favourite dish is chicken korma, said: "I really enjoyed today and the food tasted nice. It looks like a lot of fun and we were shown how to make a chicken tikka masala and some onion
bhajis.
"But I'm not going to cook it for my mum and dad - it looks really difficult."
Freya Addison, six, said: "I liked being in the kitchen and watching the chef cooking the naan bread and onion bhajis.
"I like going out for a curry and my favourite is samosas. I want to learn how to make them as well."
About 60 youngsters from the school watched as head chef Suhel Miah chopped and prepared the ingredients before cooking the meal.
The chicken and naan bread were prepared in a large tan-doori oven at temperatures close to 400°C.
Year two teacher Sarah Young said the children had learned a lot by visiting the restaurant.
She said: "We've been looking at the different cultures, weather and environment in Wigston and Delhi. Food was one of the other things we looked at so the visit was great.
"And it was quite a treat for these children to see how traditional Indian food is made because a lot of them come to eat here with their parents."
Syed Rahman, who owns the Kelmarsh Avenue restaurant, said he hoped the trip might inspire some of the children to become curry chefs in the future.
There is a lack of trained staff in the UK and many IndiĀ­an restaurants are forced to recruit their chefs from overĀ­seas - something which can prove very costly.
He said: "A lot of people in England don't think they can do it as a career but you don't have to be in an ethnic minority to get a job in an Indian restaurant.
"There are no specific courses for people to learn how to do the job, but it would be good to have people being trained at colleges.
"Most restaurants have no option but to employ people from overseas but you have to spend lots of money travelling abroad to interview them.
"It would be excellent if some of these children decide to become chefs."
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