He might not have won the competition but fan favourite Cornwall chef Jude Kereama stole viewers’ hearts when he served a vaccine shaped and inspired dish to guests at Great British Menue’s banquet finale.
Having just missed out on a place to compete to become the champion of champions, the Porthleven-based chef was still given the honour of sorting the banquet’s palate cleansers and enhancers.
The finale’s theme was Great British innovations, with chefs using inspiration such as guide dogs, space and, in Jude’s case, vaccines.
There were celebrity and scientific guests galore at the banquet, ranging from comedian and podcaster James Acaster to a key figure in Oxford’s coronavirus vaccination efforts, professor Sarah Gilbert.
Hoping to wow the boffins in the audience, Jude, with help from architect and designer Thomas Heatherwick, put together an incredibly topical dish.
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“We’ve all been so close to the subject of vaccination over the last year,” Heatherwick said. “It felt to me a chance to be provocative and really relevant to now.”
Presenter Andi Oliver added: “Jude’s dish celebrates Britain’s role in developing vaccinations. From Edward Jenner in the 18th century to the present day.”
With garlic oil in one syringe and langoustine broth in another, Jude pulled out all the stops for this one, using the seafood expertise he’s honed at his Porthleven restaurants Kota and Kota Kai – a review of which you can read here.
The dish looked fantastic and, according to the guests, tasted the part too.
Professor Gilbert, whose work on the Oxford vaccine has undoubtedly saved lives, said of it: “I really enjoyed that. I followed the instructions very carefully which is always really important.
“And I made sure to leave a bit of space in between each one.”
Another guest said the dish was very “poignant” and added: “Think of all those millions of people getting their vaccinations at the moment. It was special.”
Others, feeling their scientific urges kick in, tried to decode Jude’s meal.
Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, a scientist, said: “I wanted to analyse it, so I got my teaspoon and I started looking at each component individually.”
Pointing to the garlic oil syringe, Dr Aderin-Pocock said: “I don’t know what this was but it was great.”
Viewers at home were wowed and charmed by Jude’s dish, as well as an adorable kitchen visit from his son Joe.
As well as the vaccine dish, Jude also served up some space-themed chocolate spheres.
He made more than a hundred of the tiny things, which were full of something delicious and creamy.
They were a hit, and also have a special significance this year, as the 30th anniversary of Helen Sharman becoming the first Briton in space.
Jude, while not in the running for champion of champion, was a hit with guests, fans, and judges alike.
However, taking the title of champion of champions was the Lake District’s Dan McGeorge, who paid tribute to guide dogs with his dog and bone dessert.
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