This year, David Kakamba from Orange Grove primary school walked away with that honour after competing against 9 other finalists.
The final cook-off took place at the HTA School of Culinary Art in Randburg under the watchful eyes of the judges and anxious parents, standing close by to see what the mini maestros would create in the kitchen.
The judges were looking out for the three contestants who showed the most creativity and whose dishes had the best appearance, taste, texture and degree of difficulty.
The contestants also had to bring along décor items with which to create a table setting that would complement their dishes, so apart from finding the McCain Junior Chef of the Year, many aspiring designers were also born.
All the contestants, aged between the ages of 11 and 13, each had two hours in which to prepare their dish, using at least one McCain ingredient and costing no more than R60. At the end of the day there were three who stood out in all categories and walked away with the prizes.
In first place was David Kakamba, a Gr.7 pupil from Orange Grove in Johannesburg. He made a deliciously ‘breeding bread’ – a baked, vetkoek-like dish which came out tops.
Karma Elston and Yaseera Loonat, both Gr. 7 pupils came in at second and third place respectively.
Competitions like these gives the youth a chance to develop skills and in no time Jamie and Nigella will have to watch their backs.