THERE was yet another culinary award for West Cork recently when student pastry chef Aisling Kelly took a silver medal at the annual European Association of Hotel & Tourism Schools (AEHT) competition in Croatia.
Aisling, who lives with her family in Baltimore, is a third year student at CIT, where she is studying the culinary arts and culinary entrepreneurship.
‘I was delighted to have been one of three CIT students to take part in the competition,’ Aisling told The Southern Star.
‘When we got to Split in Croatia, we were all teamed up with students from other colleges around Europe and given the task of creating a dessert which showcased our skills.’
The competition was made up of 17 teams and Aisling was teamed with Laura D’Ambrosio (Italy) for the pastry competition.
The students were told that they must include either puff, filo or crepe pastry, and were given a list of standard ingredients with which to come up with an award-winning creation.
Aisling’s pastry, which was cleverly named ‘Split Decision’, consisted of a duo of strudel pastry and puff pastry, filled with a vanilla pastry cream and sautéed apples.
She topped it with a raspberry baked cheesecake and bavarois, and garnished with a white chocolate dish, and served with a vanilla sauce.
‘We had two hours to plate up five desserts for the judges and when it came to the awards ceremony, I was delighted when we received our silver medals,’ Aisling said.
Aisling is currently on a placement with Arbutus Bread in Cork city and plans to continue her studies after she graduates next year and go on to complete a master’s degree.
‘I want to travel to France and Spain next year and learn as much as I can,’ Aisling told The Southern Star.
‘The competition was a fantastic experience but I couldn’t have done any of this without all the encouragement from my family and also the incredible support from Siobhan and Anthony at Kalbos in Skibbereen, where I work part-time.’