Ploy secures 3rd place in Zest Quest Asia – Tilda Challenge 2021

As Tilda announce the winners of Zest Quest Asia – Tilda Challenge Award 2021, Cambridge Regional College is thrilled to confirm that Ploy Tachadee, Level 2 Production Chef, finished in 3rd place for the ‘Best Use of Rice’.

Tasting judges were on hand to guide the panel of judges through the preparation and tasting of each finalists dish, which saw guest chef, Mark Poynton spend the morning in the professional kitchens with Ploy as she prepared her dish, Massaman Chicken Curry with Pineapple Fried Rice.

Annette Coggins, Head of Foodservice, Tilda UK said, “This year’s competition was tougher than ever before, with the chefs creating a diverse range of dishes and executing each one to the highest quality. At Tilda we pride ourselves on innovation and the versatility of our rice products and that’s why Oliver took the trophy this year. We do want to say that we consider everyone who got to this final stage as a winner, so we extend our thanks and congratulations to all the finalists”.

The competition is headline sponsored by Tilda Foodservice who, in collaboration with the Todiwalas, hope to inspire student chefs across the UK to consider Asian cookery as a future career by recognising outstanding talent, knowledge and understanding of the cuisine. Together they hope to place classical Asian cookery firmly on the curriculum, as well as build on the skills needed for future chefs to succeed in the Asian food industry.

Zest Quest Asia
Massaman Curry

Cyrus Todiwala said, “This was one of the toughest competitions to judge in a long time. Each and every finalist wowed the judges with their sheer effort and talent, so regardless of there being only a few named winners, everyone deserves a pat on the back for a great job done.

“Pervin, myself, our director Murray and all the Zest Quest Asia team are grateful to Tilda Foodservice for the commitment and resources they’ve poured into the Zest Quest Asia – Tilda Challenge 2021. It’s unbelievably rewarding to see that our passion to ensure student chefs develop skills and knowledge in Asian cuisine is also shared by college lecturers up and down the country, as well as the tasting judges who shared their expertise with us.”

This year’s winners were revealed virtually due to Covid-19 regulations but that didn’t dampen the spirit of any of the incredibly talented entrants. Due to the competition’s growing popularity, and the sheer quality of applications, the original format of six finalists was doubled to allow for twelve young chefs to take part in the finals of the competition, which saw over 90 entries from across the UK.

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