Win takes the cake

Central Leader - - News -

For stu­dent Sarah Har­rap, winning a na­tional bak­ing com­pe­ti­tion takes the cake.

The Mt Al­bert res­i­dent has won this year’s We­ston Milling Trainee of the Year award af­ter beat­ing more than 70 com­peti­tors in Welling­ton last month.

The 19-year-old is in her fi­nal year of a two-year patis­serie diploma at AUT but, as the daugh­ter of a chef, she has en­joyed work­ing with chocolate and pas­try since she was young.

“Hav­ing a dad who’s a chef, you’re al­ways brought up around food,” she says.

“It’s re­ally good. Be­cause I’m in­ter­ested in it, it’s re­ally easy to learn about it.”

She once made a Mad Hat­ter’s tea party out of chocolate for a course as­sess­ment and says for the com­pe­ti­tion, the key to her suc­cess was prepa­ra­tion as she baked mini quiches and Turk­ish bread, and dec­o­rated cup­cakes.

Stu­dents were marked on their time-keep­ing, clean­li­ness, com­pe­tency, taste, flavour and ap­pear­ance of their food.

For the fi­nal Sarah had to bake the quiches and bread, dec­o­rate cup­cakes and pre­pare and bake some­thing sweet with pre­mixed in­gre­di­ents she was given.

“I’d come up with an idea and then Arno, my tu­tor, would train with me and help me make it bet­ter,” she says.

AUT’s se­nior patis­serie lec­turer Arno Sturny says Sarah’s fo­cus and at­ten­tion to de­tail were im­por­tant fac­tors con­tribut­ing to her suc­cess.

“She’s very de­ter­mined and she stud­ies and re­searches well. You have to be metic­u­lous around pas­try as it’s quite sci­ence ori­en­tated,” he says.

Sarah has also been in­vited to be an ob­server judge at next year’s com­pe­ti­tion and will talk to other stu­dents in­ter­ested in com­pe­ti­tion about what to ex­pect.

The com­pe­ti­tion is open to all bak­ing and chef patis­serie trainees in New Zealand and has a prize pack­age value of $14,000.

Photo: JA­SON OX­EN­HAM

Per­fect patis­serie: AUT patis­serie stu­dent Sarah Har­rap is this year’s We­ston Milling Trainee of the Year.

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