POLISH pierogi dumplings with Oxford Blue cheese and sausages made with Oxfordshire chicken wowed judges at a school cookery contest.

The two internationally-inspired but locally-flavoured dishes were cooked up by Heidi Preghenella and Alicia Edwards from Matthew Arnold School in Oxford at the midcounties final of this year's Create & Cook Competition.

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The contest, run by education project fit2cook, challenged pupils from across Oxfordshire and beyond to create menus using local ingredients.

Heidi and Alicia both met the brief, but also stirred in a taste of their international backgrounds.

The Oxford Times:

Alicia, who showed off her Polish heritage with her dumplings, also used flour from Wantage's Wessex Mill at the event on July 1.

Heidi, meanwhile, flavoured her sausage with jerk spices and served it with asparagus from Millets Farm near Abingdon.

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Kuba Winkowski, chef at the Feathered Nest near Witney, was one of the judges and praised the girls for their original ideas, culinary skill and the great taste of both their dishes.

He also commented on the girls’ sense of humour in the kitchen and said cooking should always be fun.

The Oxford Times:

Also representing Oxfordshire at the Foodworks Cookery School were Aiofe McGuire and Niamh Mulcahy from St Helen and St Katharine in Abingdon.

Both pairs of Oxfordshire girls did well at the final but were piped at the post by Leon Woolley and Deaken Bhavnani from Cirencester Deer Park School in Gloucestershire who became the 2019 Midcounties Champions.

The Oxford Times:

The 2020 Competition will be launched to all secondary schools across Oxfordshire in September.

To find out more see createandcook.co.uk