There was much more than food on the menu of last Friday’s long lunch in Camden with top chef Luke Mangan.
One of the main aims of the event was to showcase the hospitality skills of local Vocational Education & Training (VET) students from three local schools: St Benedict’s Catholic College, Elizabeth Macarthur and Ingleburn High.
The students prepared and cooked the food, set the tables, made the table decorations, designed the menu and served the meals.
Camden Region Economic Taskforce (CRET) and MWLP joined forces to put on the lunch in the Camden Civic Centre.
Along with Luke Mangan, (pictured below in the kitchen) one of Australia’s leading chefs and restaurateurs, representatives of more than 90 local businesses and potential employers attended the lunch to see for themselves the quality of local hospitality students.
CRET executive officer Debbie Roberts explained the thinking behind the long lunch with Luka Mangan: “With Camden being the fastest growing region in Australia, the Taskforce is working closely with key partners like MWLP to support initiatives that will better grow and diversify our local employment pool, so that fewer residents have to travel out of the area for employment.
“To do this we also need to increase opportunities for local business to connect to the future employment pool, and this event provided a great opportunity to do both,’’ Ms Roberts said.
The ceo of MWLP, David Williams, said the long lunch with Luke Mangan “gave our students the full turn-key experience in the hospitality industry’’.
“We were excited to secure Luke to attend as he is extremely passionate about promoting and enabling the development of young up-and-coming chefs, waiters and restaurateurs in Australia,’’ Mr Williams said.
For readers curious about what was on the menu, guests were offered canapes with guacamole, wonton cups, pumpkin and mozzarella arancini balls, Vietnamese pork and prawn rice paper rolls and lamb kofta with yoghurt dressing.
Main course was either Chicken Breast Supreme wrapped in prosciutto served with sage butter sauce on creamy parmesan polenta, accompanied by ratatouille filled zucchini cups or Braised Lamb Rump with a stout beer sauce served with garlic mashed potatoes, pea puree and sweet potato crisps.
Dessert was Banana and Mars Bar spring rolls with chocolate ganache and vanilla bean ice cream or Baileys Brulee with hazelnut biscotti and chocolate shards.