Eleven-year-old Michelle Fine from Johannesburg has the distinction of being the first entrant countrywide in this year’s Taste Bud Battle. Taste Bud Battle, South Africa’s best food competition for youngsters is, once again, on the search for the country’s best young chefs, with prizes to the value of R50 000 to be won and the chance to be crowned the Taste Bud Battle Chef of the Year 2020.
This year the theme is Fruity Fun and Fine has entered her Berry Delicious Cheesecake, although entries can also be savoury.
The youngster – who goes to King David Linksfield and lives in Orange Grove – answered some questions:
How long have you been cooking or baking?
I have been helping my dad in the kitchen for about four years but I have been cooking by myself for the past two years.
What do you love most about being in the kitchen?
I love seeing the end result of my dishes, making sure they turn out the way they are meant to and, of course, tasting everything I make.
Why did you enter the Taste Bud Battle?
I wanted to enter a competition that would challenge my cooking and baking abilities.
What are your hopes for the competition?
I hope to learn more skills in the kitchen and I would love to win.
Tell us why you chose to enter your Berry Delicious Cheesecake?
I like cheesecake a lot, I also like berries. So I decided that with fruit as the theme this year I could make the Berry Delicious Cheesecake. And it is easy for children and adults to make and everyone loves it.
One of the competition sponsors, Snowflake, will be sending Fine a hamper to congratulate her for being the first entrant.
Taste Bud Battle entries are now open in a number of categories with regional heats taking place around the country.
There are four age categories this year: pre-primary (four- and five-year olds); junior primary (aged six to nine); primary (10 to 13) and high-school (14 to 19). Entries close May 31.
Contestants can enter by going to the Taste Bud Battle website (www.tastebudbattle.co.za).
Semi-finalists will be announced on June 11, with regional cook-offs taking place on July 11 (Johannesburg); July 18 (Pretoria); July 25 (Durban); August 1 (Cape Town) and August 15 (George). Finalists will be announced on August 31 and flown up to Johannesburg for the ultimate Taste Bud Battle where category winners will be chosen and the overall grand champion will walk away with some amazing prizes on October 3.
Taste Bud Battle sponsors include Capsicum Culinary Studio, Snowflake, Cresta Shopping Centre and Menlyn Park Shopping Centre with more to be announced soon.