Cookery Live Culinary Extravaganza

16th April 2012

Ebrington Square will be the venue for the city’s first ever Cookery School Live, a fun-filled weekend of free Masterchef style events which are set to showcase the culinary expertise and high quality of local produce currently on offer in the North West.

Featuring a number of leading celebrity chefs, including the award-winning Neven Maguire from Co Cavan, as well as a host of other well-known figures from the local media, Cookery School Live will provide local cooking enthusiasts with the perfect opportunity to view professional cookery at its best, gain new tips and techniques on how to prepare food, and witness live ‘cook-offs’ in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.

Supported by North West Regional College, Ilex Urban Regeneration Company, and the City of Culture Company, the events are free to attend, and are the brainchild of local Community Chef Brian McDermott. The three-day series of events will begin on Friday 20th April when the focus will be on local school pupils who will have the opportunity to showcase their talents in front of live audiences, in an attempt to find the ‘Young Cookery School Live Chef of the Year 2012’ judged by BBC Radio Ulster’s Celebrity Chef Paula Mc Intyre.

The theme for Saturday 21st April will be ‘Ask the Expert’, at which NWRC lecturers and leading professional experts, including Masterchef extraordinaire Neven Maguire, will host a range of question and answer sessions concerning careers in the industry and how to develop your cooking abilities. Neven will impart his expert knowledge and skills in how to get the best from preparing food and local produce for the registered audience.

On Saturday Neven will also be judging two competitions for kids aged 4-12. Children are invited to create the funniest Mr or Mrs Potato Head using a local potato or a Vegetable Character. Using their creativity participants should create a quirky character using any vegetables of their choice. Entries for both competitions should be presented to Cookery School Live Event at Ebrington before by 12 noon on 21st April.

A number of live cooking demonstrations will complete the three-day event on Sunday April 22nd involving industry experts such as TV3 resident Chef Joe Shannon, professional chef Noel McMeel, NWRC lecturers, and local celebrities who will compete in The Big Cook Off on Sunday, featuring Undertones star Michael Bradley and BBC Radio Foyle presenters Mark Patterson, Stephen McCauley and BBC Radio Ulster’s Sarah Brett.

Event organiser Brian McDermott commented that there was something on offer for everybody over the 3 days: “This event is the first of its kind in the North West and is destined to be a must for anyone with an interest in cooking. We are delighted to have so many well-known celebrities taking part, both from the world of cuisine and media, all of whom have kindly given their free time to display their expertise throughout the events. Cookery School Live is the culmination of hardwork and support involving so many organisations, and we would especially like to thank North West Regional College, Ilex, and the City of Culture Company. The message is simple, if cooking is your thing, get along to Ebrington Square for Cookery School are sure to learn something new, and maybe even meet some top celebrity chefs”.

Admission to Cookery School Live at Ebrington Square is FREE, but pre-event registration is advised. To register, or to find out further details of the three day event, visit