BUDDING Bolton chefs are being given the chance to cook alongside one of the industry’s best.

Celebrity chef Gino D’Acampo is searching for an assistant to lend a hand in the kitchen during Bolton’s Food and Drink Festival in August.

The chef has invited the borough’s schoolchildren to create a pizza or pasta recipe which has a “local twist”.

The idea is to increase young people’s interest in cooking and Bolton Council is looking for an Italian recipe, to reflect the chef’s heritage, but which has a local flavour.

Gino D’Acampo said: “I've been passionate about food and cooking since I was a young boy and I’m happy to support anything that encourages children to get interested in food.

“I think this is a great idea and I can’t wait to meet the winner.”

Cllr Akhtar Zaman, Bolton Council’s executive member for Environmental Services, said: “This is a fantastic prize for a young aspiring chef and we hope that lots of recipes will be submitted.

“We’re asking young people to use a local ingredient, which could be anything from Morecambe Bay shrimp to black pudding, to celebrate the abundance of quality local produce we have on offer in the region.”

He added: “This is a great way to get young people excited about the festival, explore ingredients and get creative with their meals.”

The winner will work alongside chef Gino to cook the dish at a live cookery demonstration, in Victoria Square on Sunday, August 29.

They will also receive four tickets for family and friends to come along to cheer them on, plus a signed copy of Gino’s new cookery book.

The winning recipe will be chosen by Malcolm Veigas, the council’s assistant director of environmental services.

The dish will be cooked by Phil Ogden, the School Meals Training and Development Chef, at the winner’s school in the autumn term.

The competition closes on Friday, July 9 and winners must be available Sunday, August 29.

Entry forms can be found by clicking on to bolton.gov.uk/