City’s Academy players have been cooking up a storm in the kitchen as part of a series of workshops to help them develop their culinary skills.
Second-year scholars, who are currently living with house parents but will move into apartments next season, were invited along for a cookery demonstration at Delia’s Restaurant and Bar with head chef Nigel Ramsbottom.
The group were shown a video from Delia’s Online Cookery School before heading into the kitchen to whip up some egg-based dishes.
Clive Cook, Norwich’s PDP Player Care Manager, said: “If you look at the main life skills that players need, top of the list would probably be cooking skills and next year the boys will be going to be in apartments so it’s important that they are able to cook for themselves.
“Giving them basic recipes like this is really important and who better to teach them than one of Delia’s chefs. It’s a great opportunity for the lads.
“They are all quite competitive and like to think they can do things well, but I think the reality is that it’s a life skill they haven’t quite developed yet.”
As the sessions progress, the players will be working through recipes from Delia’s Frugal Food, How to Cheat and How to Cook cookery books.
Second-year scholar Adam Idah said: “It was brilliant, and everyone really enjoyed it. It’s a great learning curve for all of us because we will be moving into apartments soon, whether it’s at Norwich or at home, so it was good to learn some different dishes that we can make for ourselves.
“Some of us will be moving into apartments together so we can do these dishes when we are at home for each other and if we have some of the players over, we will now be able to make some food, so it has been great and it’s also good for some team bonding.”
As well as the sessions, the players will also be cooking and serving a Christmas dinner for their parents, host parents, local dignitaries and staff from the Club later this month.
Speaking at the first cookery demonstration, Nigel said: “It has been very interesting, some of the players looked a bit petrified but by the time we finish with them in a few months’ time they should be able to cook, so it’s quite exciting.
“We have been doing egg-based dishes as Delia is a great believer that eggs are the most important ingredient. To start the lessons we did eggs benedict and a soufflé Welsh rarebit and the players will also learn how to do scrambled eggs, poached eggs and how to boil an egg.
“It’s important that these guys know how to cook because they are athletes and we want them to do well for the Football Club, so they need to be able to go home and cook something which is good for them.
"As we progress and they feel more confident, we will look at preparing fish and meat and progress through the book as Delia does it.”