An Indian pizza chef has been recognised as the fastest chef in Britain and is in the running for the top prize in an international contest.
Prem Singh, 32, worked for Domino's Pizza in India before moving to Leicester, a town in the east Midlands with a large Indian population.
His speed in rustling up pizzas has grown far and wide since his recent arrival. He can prepare three pizzas at the same time - in less than 90 seconds.
Singh displayed his skills at the UK qualifying round of the Fastest Pizza Maker contest. Judged by two experts in the field, Singh prepared a trio of large pepperoni, mushroom, and cheese and tomato pizzas in a sizzling one minute and 23 seconds.
<b1>The competition was devised by fast-food giant Domino's Pizza 25 years ago to keep their staff on their toes. But now chefs from stores across the world take each other on in a bid to be crowned world champion.
Strict competition rules require that every dough base be free from holes and that all toppings be evenly distributed on each slice, piling the pressure on perfectionist pizza makers.
In 2006, Singh, who is also the area store director for Leicester's Domino's Pizza stores, was the second-fastest pizza creator in Europe, and this year he was just 24 seconds short of the world record.
He will now test his skills against seven other margherita masters in a UK final at Alton Towers March 26.
The winner will jet off to the US to compete in the world final later this year.
Singh told Leicester Mercury, a leading local daily: "The competition is designed to make sure you make really good pizzas as quickly as possible. Each one must be able to be given to a customer.
"The quickest person in the UK for six years in a row has been Pali Grewal, who owns a lot of stores in the London area. He can do it in about one minute. Last year, I was one of the quickest in Europe, but this year I just hope I make the qualifiers."
Patricia Thomas, operations director of Domino's Pizza and a past judge of the World Final in the US, said the competition was a true test of pizza mastery.
She said: "As Prem's phenomenal performance proved, Domino's Pizza employees are showing no signs of slowing up."