Could you be our 2015 Devon Life Home Cook of the Year?


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We have teamed up with Bradburys Kitchens to find our next winner

The final touches from Kevin Lan

The final touches from Kevin Lan - Credit: Archant

Following the success of last year’s first-ever Bradburys Kitchens with Devon Life Home Cook of the Year the hunt is on again to find our winner for 2015. Our competition is open to anyone over the age of 18 who lives in or has a home in Devon and the rules could not be easier.

The competition closing date is 1 June and our judges will then select our six finalists based on the three course menus they have submitted.

Already imagining yourself being crowned the winner? Read on….

The Brief: We want you to create and cook the very best three course dinner of your life. We’ll be looking for originality and creativity as well as good cooking techniques and we would like you to incorporate as many Devon ingredients into your meal as possible.

The Rules:

You must live or have a home in Devon.

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You must be over the age of 18

You must not have cooked or taught cooking professionally and must not have any professional qualifications.

The River Cottage

The River Cottage - Credit: Archant

The Pitfalls: Make sure you can deliver what you promise. Last year, the Judges eliminated contestants who promised one ingredient in their menu but delivered another.

We’ve put together the kind of foodie prizes that money cannot buy and for each of our 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prize winners we can promise an unforgettable and inspiring foodie experience that will leave them a better cook than they were before they entered the contest. Here are the prizes for 2015:

1st Prize: Our Devon Life Home Cook of the Year will win a brand new KitchenAid worth £500. This is the must-have food processor that no TV chef worth his or her salt would be seen without. Our winner will also get the change to cook with Devon-born chef, Anton Piotrowski who heads up our judging panel and who earned his first Michelin star for his gastropub The Treby Arms in Sparkwell outside Plymouth last year. Our winner will also be invited to join the judging panel for the 2016 competition.

2nd Prize: We are delighted to team up with River Cottage HQ to offer our second prize winner a cookery course worth £240. Our prizewinner will be able to choose from a number of the current courses including: One Day skills course which covers a range of techniques including bread making and fish filleting; Pig in a Day, Curing & Smoking, Seashore Foraging, Fish Cookery, Bread Making, Gluten Free Cookery, Get Growing, Cakes & Sweet Pastries, Hedgerow Foraging. To whet you appetite further visit

3rd Prize: Exeter-based Sylvain Peltier spent 10 years working as the head pastry chef with Michael Caines at the two Michelin-starred Gidleigh Park before branching out last year to launch his upmarket online patisserie company, Little French Cakes. You have not tasted ‘entrements’ until you have tasted one of Sylvain’s cakes. This talented chef is offering a day of patisserie tuition to our lucky third prize winner.

The Finals

Our six Home Cook finalists will cook for the title in a Masterchef-style finals weekend that will be held at sponsor Bradburys Kitchens Exeter showroom over the weekend of 19 & 20 September. Each cook will have two hours to make their three course menu to present to the judges but the results are kept a secret until the night of the Devon Life Food & Drink awards – a glittering black tie event that takes place on the first Thursday of November at Sandy Park.Each finalist is invited to submit a list of ingredients to the organisers in advance of the final and all those ingredients are then supplied by our additional sponsor, Waitrose.

Sue Stoneman hard at work in the kitchen

Sue Stoneman hard at work in the kitchen - Credit: Archant

The Devon Life Food & Drink Awards

Our six Home Cook finalists and their plus ones get the chance to glam up and join us for one of the county’s top foodie nights of the year – The Devon Life Food & Drink awards which honours the region’s best chefs, cooks, cafés, restaurants, food producers and shops.

The judges:

Anton Piotrowski: He’s the fiery and feisty chef/owner of The Treby Arms (Sparkwell) and the Springer Spaniel (near Launceston) whose signature carrot cake dessert helped him jointly win the Masterchef Pro title in 2012. Since then, Anton has gained his first much deserved Michelin star.

Kevin Lan: When we first saw Kevin Lan’s original and inspiring menu that helped him win the 2015 Devon Life Home Cook of the Year title we knew we’d found a very special cook. Cool as cucumber (which might be down, in part, to the fact that Kevin’s day job is as a hospital surgeon) Kevin raised the bar of last year’s competition.

Frederick Foster: Don’t be fooled by his youth – Frederick is the head chef for our partner sponsor, Miele, and has cooked just about everywhere that counts including the Sandy Lane Hotel, Barbados and The Ritz, London. In 2013, Frederick was awarded the Master of Culinary Arts (MCA) which, according to chef Michel Roux, is “the equivalent of winning a gold medal in the Olympic Games”.

Susan Clark: Susan is assistant editor at Devon Life and the Life Food & Drink Editor, South West titles. The author of a cookbook herself, her cookery writing was shortlisted last year in the prestigious Fortnum & Mason Food Writing Awards. Susan is now a judge for Great Taste and Taste of the West and an invited member of the Guild of Food Writers. In her own kitchen Susan specialises in hedgerow cooking.

How to Enter

Email your three course menu to typing Home Cook of the Year 2015 into the subject header. If you prefer to use the post, send your entries to Emma Parfitt, Devon Life, Fair Oak Close, Exeter Airport Business Park, Clyst Honiton, EX5 2UL.

Make sure you include your name, address, a passport-style colour head and shoulders photograph and a daytime telephone contact number with your entry. The competition closes on 1 June, after which you will be notified if you are one of the successful six finalists.

As part of the competition, Bradburys Kitchens with Miele will give each finalist specialist training on the Miele equipment featured in the kitchen showrooms. This can be at Bradburys Kitchens Exeter showroom or the Abingdon or London Miele showrooms.

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