Morocco wins first Bocuse D’or in Africa
On June 29 and 30, the best chefs and pastry chefs of the African continent met in Marrakech Morocco, at the Palmeraie Golf Palace Hotel. The objective; to win a ticket for the finale of the world’s most prestigious gastronomy and pastry contests, Bocuse d’or and Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, scheduled to take place in Lyon in January 2019 during the Sirha trade show
For the first time in the history of the competition, a continental selection took place in Africa, along with the Americas, Asia-pacific and European selections. More than just a springboard for these chefs, the Bocuse d’or Africa reflects the new emerging countries in the ‘Haute Gastronomy’ world.
On June 30, the first edition of the Bocuse d'or Africa, chaired by its founder, chef Kamal Rahal came to an end, after 10 hours of competition with the Moroccan team as champions and its candidate, Aissam Ait Ouakrim, securing top spot. Team Tunisia’s Marwne Younssi was second and third place went to Senegal’s Alioune Diop.
Commenting, Chef Rahal said, “Most people would be surprised to know that I am an IT engineer by profession who has always had a passion for pastry. I took over my family business at the age of 22 and was responsible for 63 employees. Today, our group, consisting of 4,500 individuals, caters to private and public establishments and airlines locally and throughout the Middle East. Having won the 2018 Africa championship, I see no reason why, with continuous perseverance, hard work and passion, we should not win the Bocuse d’or Coupe du Monde.”
On the eve of the competition, on June 29, Marrakech welcomed the 4th African selection of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie. Eight national teams, each composed of one chocolate specialist and one sugar specialist, had five hours to create one frozen fruit dessert and 10 desserts on a plate, displayed on a sculpture made of chocolate, and one made of sugar. Algeria, Burkina Faso, Côte d’ivoire, Egypt, Ghana, Morocco, Senegal and Tunisia all displayed original ideas and produced exceptional pastry creations in their attempt to qualify for the world finale of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, in January 2019 in Lyon.