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Middlesbrough culinary giants battle for parmo supremacy

Local takeaway crowned post-pub nosh king

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Middlesbrough culinary giants went head-to-head over the weekend in the World Parmo Competition - a battle to identify just who serves the ultimate local contribution to haute cuisine.

The honours went to Mike's Return takeaway, which wrested the crown from 2008 winner Borge Ristorante in Stockton-on-Tees, pipping it into second spot by just one point. Billingham's Mohujo's Mexican Restaurant took third place.

Legend has it that the parmo - a deep-fried pork or chicken fillet topped with béchamel sauce and cheese - was invented by former army chef Nicos Harris back in 1958. It quickly forged a reputation as the perfect antidote to a night on the sauce, particularly when served with mountains of chips.

More than 5,000 people flocked to the Stockton Summer Show at Preston Park in Eaglescliffe to watch the parmo clash of titans, judged by an expert panel including the Mayor of Stockton, Lynne Apedaile, and Jeff the Chef, who "created and commercially launched chilled Chicken Parmos in supermarkets".

Mike's Return previously won the contest in 2007, when Mike Featherstone - aka "The Parmo King" - ran the fine dining establishment. Featherstone died earlier this year, and winning cooks Imad Salah and Peter Harrison dedicated their victory to him.

Harrison said: "We know that Mike will be looking down and smiling at this. He would be so pleased that we won. He was the Parmo King and was well known for his parmos. We really wanted to win this for him today and we are so glad that we have."

El Reg is seriously considering taking on the local parmo talent in 2013. In July last year, we launched our popular post-pub nosh deathmatch series when we prepared the mouth-watering dish for combat with Canadian poutine. If your arteries can stand it, there are details on just how to prepare the parmo right here. ®

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