The 16 and 17-year-olds, from Bishop Auckland College, will this weekend work with Ivor Peters in his Indian Kitchen pop-up restaurant.
While hungry diners can help the teens on their way to a career in catering, with the chance to win a barbecue for their efforts.
“BAFF is very dear to me,” said Ivor, who previously launched his “Curry Memoirs” book at the festival. “And it feels a little bit like coming home.”
“The warmth and real interest people have here is unlike many other festivals – the people who come are proper foodies. For a chef and food writer that is wonderful.
“And to come back and work with the College and the students is brilliant.
“They are so passionate and really care about what they are doing, and I trust them to do a fabulous job.”
The festival will see the debut of Urban Rajah’s new “casual dining” concept restaurant, with a menu – made from food provided by sponsor Sainsbury’s – including “Burotis” – Indian style burritos.
During the day Ivor will also be leading demonstrations on how to cook some of his food, with sessions at 11am, 1pm and 3pm on Saturday, and 11am, 1pm and 2.15pm on Sunday.
While to help fund an educational trip to London for some of the students – where they will learn new skills, including chocolate making – Broil King has donated a barbecue, which will be raffled during the festival.
But before all that, on Thursday Ivor visited the College to begin two days of lessons, taking the young chefs through the dishes they will be preparing.
Ivor said: “The menu includes a tandoori chicken recipe from Chowpatty beach in Mumbai, where the street food hawkers serve just the most delicious food, served with basmati rice, chutneys and salad. It’s a taste of India in a wrap.
“We’ve also got Rajasthan lamb, a chicken tikka masala and a roast paneer dish for vegetarians.”
Ivor hopes that the pop up kitchen – which can be found on the bowling green in the grounds of Auckland Castle – will top last year’s success.
“Last year we did about 800 covers in the restaurant, so hopefully we can top that,” Ivor said.
“I can’t wait. I’m really looking forward to it. There’s not many environments where students have the opportunity to serve almost 1,000 covers, so it’s a great experience for them.”
The pop up restaurant will be open Saturday between 10.30am and 4.30pm and Sunday between 10.30am and 3.30pm. No booking is required.
For more information about Bishop Auckland Food Festival 2016 visit www.bishopaucklandfoodfestival.co.uk.