Old Buckswoodian and Masterchef The Professionals contestant Luke Phillips visited his old school last week and gave a masterclass on fine cooking with a select group of students.
The smells filling the new kitchen, located close to the library drew a crowd of pupils alongside some of teachers that taught Luke who graduated at the end of Form Five in 2009.
He reached the semi finals of the prestigious BBC TV cookery programme last year and chose to cook steak with mushrooms and a Dover Sole with pea risotto and a medley of sea salad leaves including Oyster Leaf, Sea Purslane and Samphire, when he visited Buckswood last week.
“I used to go and cook at The Double Dragon Chinese Restaurant in Hastings, then I trained under the specialised chef scholarship programme at the Bournemouth and Poole College. I worked at The Chewton Glen Hotel and I was also Head Chef at a Ski Resort in Austria.” Said Luke.
After returning to England he worked locally at the Webbe’s Restaurants including The Wild Mushroom, Webbe’s at The Fish Café, Webbe’s Rock-a-Nore and the Webbe’s Cookery School. He then returned to the Chewton Glen Hotel and is still working there now.
“I went into the Masterchef competition to compare myself to other chefs. I also wanted to get my name out there and to push local food suppliers and I think I succeeded,” he says.
Luke definitely sparked the students interest in cooking across the campus, with many wanting to be more involved in the evening meals and lessons according to the school..