The competition took place at Westminster Kingsway College, where 12 finalists competed for the title. The finalists had been selected from 8,200 young people who entered the competition, having made their way through local and regional heats.
They were given two hours to prepare a couple of quality dishes that would impress the judges. Carmichael, who attends Bellerive FCJ Catholic College in Liverpool, caught the judges’ attention with her enthusiasm and skill. Her menu consisted of lamb shoulder, pan fried lamb and pulled lamb with pistachio and mint crumb, butternut squash, new potatoes and spinach and shallot purée. This was followed by a chocolate and raspberry plate, with warm chocolate and raspberry fondant, raspberry syllabub.
On hearing she was the FutureChef winner 2014, Carmichael said: “I can’t believe it. There were so many amazing dishes, I’m so shocked I’ve won.”
Inspiring young talent
Chief executive of the Springboard charity Anne Pierce said: “Congratulations to all of our hard-working, committed finalists, they have all been part of a great FutureChef. It really is amazing to see the quality of work by young chefs improve year on year, the talent we see as a result of the Springboard FutureChef initiative is remarkable and Anna Carmichael is a true winner.
“To bring together Springboard’s network of experienced chefs, FutureChef alumni and our hospitality partners in this way ensures that we as an industry, continue to inspire young talent to learn about food and cooking as well as gaining valuable experience about career opportunities in this great industry.’’
Celebrity chef James Martin said: “You can see that these young people have really listened to their mentors, but they still had to deliver under pressure and that’s impressive. Overall the competitors have delivered a really high standard and presented us with some standout dishes.”
Carmichael won a behind-the-scene visit to Royal Ascot to work with top chefs, a night in a hotel with her parents that evening, and £400 worth of vouchers for her school.
Second place: Meganne Shearer, North Scotland
Third Place: Jordon Powell, South East
Fourth Place: Rick Owens, London
Central and South Scotland: Rebecca Ramsay
East Midlands: Isobel Coombs
East of England: Henry Mathews
North East: Connor Blades
Northern Ireland: Christine Graham
South West: Katie England
Wales: Bronwen Jenkins
West Midlands: Carl Ridsdale