Hampshire Now - your County Council magazine

School Chef of the Year

Chocolate brownies

The School Chef of the Year competition is run by the Local Authority Catering Association (LACA), of which the County Council’s Catering Services (HC3S) is a member. This competition is a wonderful opportunity to showcase the skill, dedication and passion of those people who provide school children with great tasting and nutritious meals every day. It is the only dedicated culinary competition for the school meals industry.

Each contestant is required to produce a healthy, balanced, two course meal, comprising a main course and dessert, using local products where possible. Alison Richardson, our school meals Unit Supervisor from Bentley COE Primary School in East Hampshire, was chosen by LACA to go through to the South East Regional Finals, with her menu which was:

  • Chicken and sweet potato parcel with green beans and tomato onion coulis.

  • Chocolate and beetroot brownie with chocolate sauce.

Alison won Best Dessert for the South East region and here is the winning recipe for her chocolate and beetroot brownie with chocolate sauce.

Chocolate & Beetroot Brownie

Serves 12

Baking Tin: 9” x 7”  (23 cm x 18 cm)

Cooking time: 25 minutes at 180 degrees C


8 oz  (200 g) Caster sugar

4½  oz (112 g) Unsalted butter (melted)

1 oz  (25 g) Cocoa

2 eggs (beaten)

4½  oz (112 g) Plain flour

¼ tsp Baking powder

3 oz (75 g) Cooked beetroot, finely grated


Melt the butter gently over a low heat, and put to one side to cool slightly.

In a mixing bowl, sieve together the plain flour, baking powder and cocoa, stir in the sugar.

Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, pour in the cooled butter, beaten eggs and finely grated beetroot.

  • Mix together until all ingredients are combined.
  • Put mixture into a lined baking tin
  • Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes. The top will be firm and the centre still soft.
  • Leave to cool.
  • Cut into 12 pieces

Chocolate Sauce


¼ can of light condensed milk

1 oz cocoa powder


Pour condensed milk into a small saucepan, stir in the sieved cocoa powder. Heat together gently to make the sauce. To serve, place the brownie in a dish and pour over the chocolate sauce.