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Gremista winter times 2018 19

Shetland praised as ‘one of the food islands’

| Written by Hans J Marter

SHETLAND's annual food festival got under way on Friday night with the first ever live Ready, Shetland? Cook! event, held at the Clickimin Leisure Centre, in Lerwick.

MasterChef Gary Maclean challenged Jonathan Williamson of Fjara bar and Akshay Borges of The String to cook a delicious meal in front of a 200 strong audience. They were supported by two members from the audience, Marlene Hunter and Magnus Robertson.

MasterChef Gary Maclean demonstrating some of his cooking skills to compere Jane Moncrieff and the 200 strong audience. Photos: Hans J Marter/Shetland News MasterChef Gary Maclean demonstrating some of his cooking skills to compere Jane Moncrieff and the 200 strong audience. Photos: Hans J Marter/Shetland News Following a closely fought contest the audience chose the Williamson/Hunter team as the winner of the cooking challenge.

Maclean said he was pleased to have been able to return to Shetland after having visited a few years ago when he had the chance to sample and promote Shetland mussels.

He said he was "blown away" by the diversity and quality of the local produce.

"There is everything here that you could ever want," he said, adding that he was "really looking forward to" participating in the food festival.

One of the dishes prepared during the cooking challenge. One of the dishes prepared during the cooking challenge. He added: "Shetland has always been one of those food islands.

"There is that preconception that because Shetland is so far north you are gonna be in the wilderness, but it is the complete opposite. There is a vibrant food scene and loads and loads of amazing people."

Chairwoman of Shetland Food and Drink, Marian Armitage said festival was an opportunity to showcase to local people what the isles had to offer.

"When we set up Shetland Food and Drink one of the aims was to try and promote Shetland produce to local people, and especially to bairns, but we also need to send out the message about Shetland food and drink more widely."

The three day long festival celebrating the local food and drink sector runs until Sunday with a wide range of events including cooking demonstrations, food and drink stalls, as well as the Peerie Bites competition

A full programme of events can be found via this link: https://www.tasteofshetland.com/festival/whats-on 

Compere Jane Moncrieff (right) in conversation with chef Jonathan Williamson and 'assistant' Marlene Hunter. Compere Jane Moncrieff (right) in conversation with chef Jonathan Williamson and 'assistant' Marlene Hunter.

 

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