FAIRTRADE food was on the menu as pupils took part in a cookery challenge at a Basingstoke secondary school.

The final of the Great CBEC Fairtrade Cook Off saw students from Cranbourne Business and Enterprise College compete against each other to produce a delicious meal using fairtrade ingredients.

Around 40 students took part in the challenge, which was organised by the Year 10 Young Chamber group.

They are working towards achieving fairtrade status for Cranbourne, and the competition was one of the criteria.

Year 8 students were tasked with creating a sweet dish in one hour, using at least one fairtrade ingredient.

The 10 teams that made it through to round two then cooked a savoury item. Students whipped up a range of temping dishes, including pizza, ravioli with ricotta cheese and pesto filling and stuffed chicken breasts with a creamy mushroom sauce.

Six teams fought it out in the final, where participants devised a two-course meal of their choice.

Chefs from ASK Italian restaurant, in Festival Place, Basingstoke, were invited along to judge the final, and the judges declared 13-year-old Isla Ng and 12-year-old Chyna Russell as the winners.

The pair’s winning menu was salmon in black bean sauce served on a bed of spinach and rice, followed by chocolate tuille floating on a raspberry coulis.

The winning duo were awarded an ASK Italian recipe book and vouchers for Festival Place.

William Little, assistant manager from ASK, who helped to judge the competition, said: “We decided that Chyna and Isla were worthy winners as the standard they achieved was amazing. We can’t believe that a 12-year-old and a 13-year-old cooked what they did. We would sell that in our restaurant!”