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Krishnan’s Borough Market ‘Apprentice Challenge’ blog

Last week our Lex School of Talent apprentices joined forces with Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen apprentices to take part in the Borough Market Apprentice Challenge for National Apprentice Week.

Below, Lex School of Talent apprentice, Krishnan (and Tilda Young Chef of the Year) gives us an insight into what the challenge involved:

The ‘Apprentice Challenge’ was an amazing experience. It gave me lots of opportunities to learn how to work best with other people and how to be a team player. 

We were split into three competing teams for the challenge. During the week it did, at times, become very stressful, because everybody in the team had their own opinion and ideas and everyone wanted to be heard! But that’s where being a team player really comes into action. 

Working with Jamie’s apprentices has taught me how to control and manage my emotions better. It also taught me how to deal with different characters and their emotions in a mature and professional manner. 

In our teams we had to practice a wide range of disciplines, from accounting and project management to HR, selling and of course cooking! We had to remain very goal-oriented and multi-task extreme​ly well.

Each team had to use fresh produce, source and negotiate with our own suppliers and create a dish that was different to anything else sold in the Market – we then had to pass the strict quality guidelines of Borough Market, in addition to meeting the high expectations of Lexington and Fifteen.

We decided to make homemade basket tacos with braised beef brisket, Mexican slaw, hot chilli sauce and cheese. 

At the end of the challenge it all worked out perfectly, because we worked together as a team, and we won the challenge! We sold £700 worth of portions and raised £117 in additional donations for Comic Relief. In total we generated just under £650 in profit (once ingredients and disposables were taken into account).

Over the course of the lunch period all three apprentice challenge stalls raised over £1,200 for Comic Relief. The afternoon trading was a lot of fun – even more so because we were the champions!