Westminster cook-off beckons for former Northampton College catering apprentice

A former Northampton College catering student will have the chance to represent the town in the Houses of Parliament having been put forward to defend Saffron’s crown in the 2017 Tiffin Cup.

Mohammad Shahajan Tiffin Cup 2017

Mohammad Shajahan, aged 22, was taken on as an apprentice by the award-winning Castilian Street restaurant three years ago. He has gone on to work alongside executive chef Bodrul Islam and will now look to emulate his mentor’s success in the annual parliamentary search to find the nation’s best South Asian cuisine.

Saffron was named the winner of last year’s competition, with Mr Islam’s dish of lime and ginger sea bass earning widespread acclaim from expert judges including TV chef Ainsley Harriott.

Having been put forward by David Mackintosh, Conservative MP for Northampton South, Saffron will look to defend its crown with Mr Shajahan given the responsibility to come up with a new dish for the cook-off in Westminster.

David said: “It was brilliant to see Saffron win last year and that result has really put the restaurant and Northampton town centre on the map. Hopefully Mohammad can follow in Bodrul’s footsteps and do us proud once again.”

The Tiffin Cup is awarded every year by the Tiffin Club of MPs, formed in 2006.

The aim is not only to applaud the quality of South Asian food in Britain but also to raise much-needed money for charity.

Last year’s triumph was the first time a Northampton restaurant had ever won the competition.

The Grand Final of this year’s Tiffin Cup will be held in the House of Commons in July.