Great British Menu to star inventive Harrogate chef

Stephanie Moon.

Stephanie Moon.

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HARROGATE is heading back into the national food limelight, with a celebrated local chef competing in this year’s Great British Menu.

You may have seen Stephanie Moon, consultant chef at Rudding Park, doing her thing in last year’s competition. Her inventiveness and her love of food foraging and local ingredients made her great to watch.

The highlight was an inspired rhubarb dessert served straight onto the table - no plate.

Though she came second in the heat, she only lost it by a whisker. Frankly we think she was robbed.

The programme makers have wisely invited her back this year, where she’ll face off in the north east heat against Colin McGurran from Winteringham Fields in Scunthorpe and Yorkshire-born Charlie Lakin from The Marquis in Kent.

The series, which started filming late last year, will air “in the spring”, although we don’t know exactly when.

There’s an Olympic theme, which basically means that this year the boring bits in between the actual cooking will involve the various chefs chatting to high achieving sporting types, then doing a short piece to camera about how inspired they are as a result.

That’s actually a double whammy of boringness, because pretty much everything this year has an Olympic theme.

The relentless stream of tie-ins and hype has whittled down our enthusiasm for this landmark event to a tiny nub. It’s now so small that it can only been seen with a special microscope.

We appreciate that this is probably a minority view.