Easter dinner served up by Birmingham City Ladies


It’s not just on the pitch where Birmingham City Ladies have been turning up the heat in recent weeks. Four successive league wins have seen The Blues climb to third in the FA Women’s Super League, but their cooking is also first-class, says Maple from Canada’s UK chef ambassador, David Colcombe.

The squad are taking part in a series of nutritional cooking classes devised by their principal partners, Maple from Canada. In a bid to build the culinary skills of Birmingham City Ladies players, Louis Cipolla Award winner Chef Colcombe tasks the team to prepare several recipes that all contain his favourite and most versatile store cupboard ingredient, pure Canadian maple syrup.

This series of events are part of a much bigger partnership deal – the largest in Blues Ladies’ history. Maple from Canada promotes the nutritional benefits of pure Canadian maple syrup as a healthier alternative to processed sugars and other sweeteners. The maple-based dishes that Chef Colcombe devises for the squad are designed to fuel professional athletes.

University College Birmingham (UCB) was the venue for the latest cookery masterclass – an Easter extravaganza. The squad began by preparing a creamy curried maple, carrot and butter bean soup, which went down a treat.

Also on the menu was a marinated joint of lamb with maple, fennel, citrus and potatoes, serviced with a spinach rice. For the vegetarians, maple – a vegan product – was used in a creamy courgette lasagne.

The team then prepared a dessert of hot cross bread and lemon pudding with maple – a special treat after a tough morning of training.

Chef Colcombe said: “The cookery skills of both the playing and management staff at Birmingham City Ladies has mirrored their great end of season form on the pitch.

“The squad are continuing to fuel themselves with the goodness of a great, natural energy source in maple syrup, and I believe that this will prove invaluable throughout the rest of the season.

“Achieving goals, having fun, great teamwork and keeping a competitive edge in the kitchen are all very familiar to me. So, being able to pass on this expertise to these young athletes is rewarding.

“Congratulations to everyone, I can’t wait until next season.”

Birmingham City Ladies FC player taste testing the food

topping off the food

marinated joint of lamb with maple

cooking the marinated joint of lamb with maple

Pouring in the pure Canadian maple syrup

Birmingham City Ladies FC players adding some flavour

Birmingham City Ladies FC player peeling the potatoes

Birmingham City FC players cooking with maple syrup

ladling the creamy curried maple, carrot and butter bean soup

Birmingham City Ladies player taste testing the creamy curried maple, carrot and butter bean soup

Chef Ambassador David Colcombe

Taking out the vegan lasagna

Birmingham City Ladies FC players in the kitchen

marinated joint of lamb with maple, fennel, citrus and potatoes

Birmingham City Ladies FC players having some fun

pouring the maple syrup over the marinated joint of lamb

Birmingham City Ladies FC enjoying dessert

Chef ambassador David Colcombe with Birmingham City Ladies FC player checking on the food

Did you know ?

Québec exports its maple products to more than 50 countries.

Everywhere it goes, consumers of all ages appreciate maple’s unique flavour.

Scientists are studying maple’s potential health benefits.

Studies now underway include those on the antioxidant properties of the polyphenols naturally present in maple syrup.

Maple syrup can be used as a sugar substitute in most recipes.

In cake and most dessert recipes, for each 250ml (1 cup) of syrup used, simply reduce the stipulated amount of liquid (water, milk, juice, etc.) by 60ml (1/4 cup).

A source of natural energy

Maple syrup is a natural source of energy. Check out our recipes for food and drinks before, during, and after exercise.