Zack Pegg, a 24-year-old trainee chef had an experience of a lifetime as he prepared PGI Welsh Lamb for a group of meat industry professionals from the agri-food sector in Italy, arranged by Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC).
The delegation were visiting Wales as part of HCC’s efforts to promote Welsh red meat to retail and foodservice outlets in the Italian market, and demonstrate to influential industry executives the sustainable and traceable ways in which PGI Welsh Lamb and PGI Welsh Beef are produced.
Zack started working in a kitchen at the age of 14 as a kitchen porter, and after his first choice of college course was full, Zack decided to turn his hand to cooking, and hasn’t looked back since.
Zack prepared three PGI Welsh Lamb dishes for the visitors, including Christmas Lamb Wellington, Cawl Stir Fry and Lamb Rack with Indian Slaw. “This was a new experience for me, cooking in a different environment under a different type of pressure was challenging, but I enjoyed it very much. I haven’t done a cookery demonstration before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I’m glad that I was given the opportunity.
“The recipes I chose were a spin on Welsh classics, and this is something that I experiment with often, turning classic dishes into my own.”
“Welsh Lamb is the best, a great product to cook with, and I was glad to be able to share my passion for cooking with local produce with the industry professionals from Italy. The recipes I chose were a spin on Welsh classics, and this is something that I experiment with often, turning classic dishes into my own.”
Following in his brothers’ footsteps, Zack is an ambitious young chef and wants to further develop his cookery skills as well as learning butchery skills to help him in his work. Zack is currently doing an apprenticeship with Cambrian Training on the Professional Cookery Level 3 course which leads on from the Level 2 which he completed at Coleg Ceredigion. The apprenticeship has given Zack the opportunity to prepare more complex dishes and has allowed him the chance to gain experience in a professional kitchen.
As a result of Zack’s experience with HCC, he has been invited to be a support Chef for the Welsh Culinary Team, which is sponsored by HCC, in the Culinary Olympics next year in Stuttgart, Germany.