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09 Apr 2024

Tilda Chef Team of the Year winners champion under-loved products at International Salon Culinaire 2024 

Tilda Chef Team of the Year winners champion under-loved products at International Salon Culinaire 2024 

Brett Seagrave and Gareth Williams of Compass Group UK & Ireland have been crowned Best in Class winners for the 2024 Tilda Chef Team of the Year competition 2024, in association with the Craft Guild of Chefs, for two innovative dishes making use of products that are often seen as food waste.  

This year’s competition challenged competing chefs to construct a two-course meal using any of Tilda’s Dry Basmati rice range, ensuring that a minimum 50% of the dish was Tilda rice and 25% was a by-product or something that would have ended up in the trash.  

The challenge was prompted by data from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), which found that a third of all food produced worldwide ends up in the trash, and the judges were looking for creativity, innovation and dishes that have a ‘wow’ factor.  

The competition also aims to highlight the versatility of Tilda rice, helping chefs to cater for a wide range of diets and working as everything from a flexible base to the star of the dish.

Jo Witchell, Commercial Foodservice Marketing Manager at Tilda Foodservice, comments: “This year’s competition really demonstrated the endless possibilities of Tilda rice, with the chefs creating delicious Tilda-inspired recipes and impressing the judges with their innovative uses of a range of quality Tilda products.” 

Seagrave and Williams made use of Tilda’s Arborio rice to create an asparagus and lemon risotto for the main, with a cod’s head as the food waste element. 

Seagrave comments: “We pan fried it, got it in the oven and got some smoke through it. Picked the cheek, picked the thorax, picked the meat behind the eyes. I know some might frown upon it but in places like Spain and West Africa it’s a delicacy. In the UK it’s common to discard the cod’s head straight away but there’s some really great, succulent meat in there, especially the cheeks. 

“We’re big on tackling food waste in Compass Group. It’s something we’re pushing our chefs to do and one of my jobs is auditing our kitchens in terms of wastage and keeping it at a minimum. We’re a contract catering company and obviously driven by cost but also morally it’s not right. From a moral perspective I try and instil into all our chefs ‘why are you throwing that in the bin?’. We have a waste culture in this country and it’s about educating chefs and teaching people that you don’t have to throw these things away. Cod’s head is a prime example: it’s great meat, use it, don’t throw it away.” 

For the pudding, the duo created a rice pudding using Tilda’s Pure Basmati rice and making use of over-ripe bananas, which are binned by the millions each week in the UK, to create a banana marmalade.  

Seagrave and Williams have overcome several challenges to secure victory in this year’s Salon Culinaire competition. Two years ago, while preparing for the same challenge, Seagrave suffered a heart attack and was unable to compete, so this year’s success has an even greater meaning.  

The two also had the challenge of preparing for this year’s event while Williams was in Germany in the RAF, which made planning all the more tricky.  

“We did it all on paper and there were a few Skype calls,” explains Williams.  

Making an impact 


Another team that made waves in this year’s competition were Ian Morgan and Andy Hector from Impact Food Group, who decided to go for an Asian twist for their dishes.  

Using Tilda’s Fragrant Jasmine rice, the team created a base and then divided the rice into three parts: one for savoury, one for a puree and one for a rice pudding and banana soufflé. 

For the main course they make Asian coconut rice, crispy sea bass, cauliflower and coriander, using all of the fish, the bones for the stock and all of the cauliflower. For the banana soufflé, the team use the whole banana including the skin.  

“We loved the experience of cooking live at the competition,” they say. “Salon Culinaire is one of the best places to do competitions and very good to network. From fitting in practice to doing the competition, it makes you a better and stronger chef.  

“We feel it's really important to try no waste, and to cook new things within this, like the cauliflower ribs. The whole banana works well in many recipes, and you can't tell.” 

To find out more about all the winners of International Salon Culinaire 2024, visit Learn more about Tilda’s innovative product range at  







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