Cookery students at Otago Polytechnic are hanging up their chef-hats in celebration after serving up the final of their sell-out themed dinner nights.
The hugely successful dinner evenings, hosted exclusively by students on the Certificate in Cookery Level 3 course at the Polytechnic’s Cromwell campus, have been repeatedly fully booked out by diners who have lapped up the delicious, world-inspired cuisine at the campus’s Molyneux Restaurant.
Students designed, cooked and served the dishes to customers each week as part of their course curriculum. Individual nights took the theme of Wild Foods, Moroccan, Italian, Curry, with the finale late last week being a hugely successful Filipino Night.
Otago Polytechnic Programme Director Jo Brun said the students consistently produced a diverse range of flavorsome dishes and ‘ran the show’ with great success.
“We have a very cosmopolitan mix of students on our cookery courses that help bring a huge variation of palates to the table, so these themed nights give them the chance to showcase their own cultures and culinary creations while delivering valuable experience of working in a real-life restaurant environment,” she said.
Each night students were supervised by professional chef and trained lecturer Roydon Cullimore and a front of house supervisor. Students were graded on their performance throughout the evenings, which contributes to their overall achievement on the course.
“We’ve been extremely impressed with the high standard of creations and delivery of the themed nights this year, and we’re thrilled that each and every one sold out,” said Mrs Brun.
Dishes from the Wild Foods menu used locally sourced ingredients to serve hearty dishes such as the South Island Mussel Fritters entree, Oven Roasted Venison main course and a Honey and Wild Thyme Bruleé dessert.
The Filipino menu was exclusively designed by Filipino student Carlo Buenaventura. It featured dishes such as a Bean curd and Pork ‘Tokwa’t Baboy’ entrée, Veal Shanks in beef jus ‘Bulalo Steak’ main course and Brazo de Mercedes Napoleon dessert.
“Every night offered something truly different. Next year there will be some new surprises and also some old favourites returning,” said Mrs Brun.
Cookery students will soon be able to take a further step towards their chef career by enrolling for Otago Polytechnic’s new Diploma in Professional Cookery Level 5, which is set to launch in February 2011.
For more information on cookery programmes provided at Otago Polytechnic’s Cromwell Campus go to www.otagopolytechnic.ac.nz.