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News : New Providence Last Updated: Apr 21, 2017 - 2:25:21 AM


25th annual National Young Chef Culinary Competition at Government House
By Autherine A. Francis
Apr 20, 2017 - 11:52:42 PM

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Photos: Autherine A. Francis

Champion Young Chefs from all over The Bahamas celebrated the 25th Anniversary of the “National Young Chef Culinary Competition” at Government House in Nassau. Her Excellency the Gov. Gen. Dame Marguerite Pindling, GCMG, presented the awards under the Ministry of Education’s Family and Consumer Science Career and Technical Section’s theme: “Fostering Passion & Promoting Excellence in Culinary Arts”.

Dame Pindling said, “I commend the organizers, teachers and students for the level of professionalism and skills they have developed and demonstrated during this event and challenge you further to allow the expertise, the constructive criticism and recommendations of the industry professionals attached to the competition to propel you toward maximizing your productive capacity as budding chefs. Students, your potential is limitless.”

Mahatma® Rice and Robin Hood® Flour, title sponsors of the event for all 25 Years, in conjunction with distributor Asa H. Pritchard and the Ministry of Education, have provided more than $200,000 in scholarships, travel and accommodation for students and teachers, more than 3,000 participants in the 25 years, under the organization of Keith Parker, MBE, President of P. S. Advertising and PR.

Dame Marguerite lauded the partnership of the private and public sector in producing such success, thanking the teachers and saying “ To the sponsors, the judges and the organizers, such an event is an ideal representation of the value and strength of public private sector partnerships in order to build capacity in Culinary Arts within The Commonwealth of the Bahamas. I challenge you to find new avenues and ventures to expose more students to such a heightened level of professional exposure. We look forward to 25 more years of great success.”

Also honored were: The Minister of Education from 25 years ago, Dr. Bernard Nottage; Young Chef Competition Founders Keith and Sara Parker;

Craig Hepburn from Asa H. Pritchard; Sharon Ferguson from the Ministry of Education and Chief Judge Chef Edwin Johnson who has served for each of the 25 years.

Keith Parker, MBE, best known for his track and field coaching and administration, is proud of this culinary brainchild, “I am proud to have initiated the National Young Chef Competition 25 years ago, along with Mrs. Parker. Working with The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and sponsors Mahatma® Rice and Robin Hood® Flour, this programme has probably produced as many scholarships as track and field, in addition to providing scores of job opportunities in the hospitality industry, catering and teaching, for young Bahamian. I have every expectation that the Young Chef programme will continue and expand into the next decade.”

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Photos: Autherine A. Francis


WINNERS--Sr. High School Champion Young Chefs

The 25th Anniversary National Young Chef Culinary Compeition is Dedar Williams from Jack Hayward High School, Grand Bahama. Dedar wowed the judges with her “Wildcat Rice with Medley of Flavors”as her Mahatma® Rice Dish and “Down Home Seafood Surprise With Spicy Mango Sauce” as her Robin Hood® Flour Dish, both winning gold medals.

Selva Hudson from N G M Major in Long Island, placed second in the senior division. A returning contestant who never gave up, Selva won the National Young Chef Culinary Junior Competition in 2014. Selva entered every year since making him a crowd favorite, however he placed fifth in 2016. This year Selva’s Mahatma® Dish “Peas ‘n’ Rice Bounded by Cream Cheese Delight with Glimmering Pink Pomegranate Syrup with a Fresh Fruit Salad” and his Robin Hood® Flour Dish “Creamy Greens in a Puffy Sweet Potato Choux Drizzled with Tangy Tamarind Sauce and Served with Spicy Turbot Salsa” brought him the Runner Up Title.

Avery Hall from Preston Albury High School, Eleuthera, placed third with his Mahatma® Dish “Lionfish Stuffed Cassava Plantain Rice Cakes with Cilantro Dip”, and his Robin Hood® Flour Dish “Tropical Tamarind and Pumpkin Delight.”

Fourth place went to C. R Walker Senior High’s Petrae Williams of New Providence.

Also competing as Senior Island Champions at the finals held at Anatol Rogers Senior School in Nassau were: Donovan Moss of Akhepran International, New Providence; Delgardo Parker of S.C. Bootle, Abaco; Andrea Greene of Arthurs Town, Cat Island; Jabez Saunders-Emil of R.N. Gomez All Age, Berry Islands; Shadine Brown of Louise McDonald All Age, Bimini; Clifton Rolle, of Acklins Central, Acklins; Raschede Williams of Colonel Hill, Crooked Is.; Tamikia Bain of Central Andros High, Andros.

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Photos: Autherine A. Francis

Jr. High School Champion Young Chefs

The 25th Anniversary National Young Chef Culinary Competition is Tatiana Major of Old Bight High, Cat Island. Tatiana's Best Mahatma® Rice Dish "Exotic Papaya Spicy Seafood Rice in Sweet Potato Curry Sauce with a Sour Orange Carrots Pineapple Salsa", astonished judges. “With every bite there was flavor of all named items...like a party in your mouth," said Chef Debbie Wheeler of the Riviana /Mahatma® Test Kitchen. Tatiana's Robin Hood® Flour Dish, “Silver Jubilee Sour Sop Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Filling 'N' Beets Mango Sauce” displayed baking skills incorporating beets and mango into a sauce.

2nd Place in The National Young Chef Culinary Junior Competition is New Providence Winner is Jamal Munroe of C. H. Reeves Junior School. His Robin Hood® Flour Dish was “Papaya Roll” which scored second best flour dish. His Mahatma® Rice dish was “Calypso Risotto” which also placed 2nd.

3rd Place Junior Champion Young Chef went to Joshua Claridge of Preston Albury High School in Eleuthera. Joshua’s Mahatma® Dish was “Lionfish & Lobster Rice Napoleon;” his Robin Hood® Flour Dish, “Tropical Almond Delight”.

In 4th place was Alissa Swain from Abaco Central High School. Her Mahatma® Rice Dish was “Exotic Island Rice Salad”; her Robin Hood® Flour Dish was “Bahamarap”.

The Junior Young Chefs Competitors, with students in grades 7-9, competed at L.W. Young in Nassau, where the competition started 25 years ago. Other Participating Island Champions were:

Makayla Walker of Central Andros High; Ashley Poitier of Jack Hayward, Grand Bahama; Marieta Lewis of Colonel Hill High, Crooked Island; Faith Deveaux of Louise McDonald School, Bimini and Tavarian Rahming of L. W. Young New Providence.

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Photos: Autherine A. Francis



JUDGES

Top professionals in the hospitality industry faithfully serve as coaches and judges for the National Young Chef’s Culinary Competition. Participating in the 25th Anniversary event were:

Chef Debbie Wheeler of Mahatma® Riviana Foods Test Kitchen, Houston, Texas;

Executive Chef Edwin Johnson of Sapodilla Restaurant, Head Judge for all 25 years;

Pastry Chef Celeste Smith, former Young Chef Winner (2006);

Chef Pauline Armbrister, educator and professional pastry chef;

Chef Davian Maycock, Chef Jasmine Ambrister and Chef Sterling Thompson, educators at the University of The Bahamas;

Chef Jeremy Houghton and Chef Tanjay Jackson, educators at Johnson & Wales, Miami, Florida

Lively New Challenges for Champion Young Chefs

Marking the 25th Anniversary Celebration of the National Young Chef Culinary Competition, the sponsors, Mahatma® Rice and Robin Hood® Flour, in conjunction with distributor Asa H. Pritchard and the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, decided to add new challenges and prizes to an already exciting programme--special team challenges:

“The Young Chef Cupcake Challenge” for 2-member teams of senior high school students grades 10-12;

“The Young Chef Cupcake Challenge” for 2-member teams of junior high school students grades 7-9;

“The Young Chef Mystery Basket Challenge Pastry” for 2-member teams of Senior High School students, 12th grade only ;

“The Young Chef Mystery Basket Challenge Hot Food” for 2-member teams of Senior High School students, 12th grade only.

“Though still in its initial stages, we have decided to launch this new venture giving the students a taste of what’s to come. We expect 2018 and beyond to be bigger and even better,“ said Ms. Raquel Turnquest, Acting Education Officer at the Ministry of Education Family and Consumer Science Education.
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Photos: Autherine A. Francis


Team Winners were:

“The Young Chef Cupcake Challenge Senior” for 2-member teams of high school students;

1 Yasmine Love & Paige Cartwright of NGM Major High School Long Island

2 Chakelle Fortune & Helena Petit-Frere of C.I.Gibson High School New Providence

3 Thillman Saunders & Dontez Williams of Anatol Rodgers High School New Providence

4 Xanthae Poitier & Chesleeann Finley of Akrephran International New Providence

“The Young Chef Cupcake Challenge Junior” for 2-member teams of junior high school students;

1 Camuel Coakley & Noel Symonette of Anatol Rodgers High School New Providence

2 Junior Johnson & Crystal Stubbs of Old Bight High School Cat Island

3 Tavarian Rahming & Edward McKenzie of LW Young Junior School New Providence

4 Trevonia Tinker & Petra Butler of San Salvador High School, San Salvador

“The Young Chef Mystery Basket Challenge --Pastry” for Senior 2-member; teams;

1 Avani Curry & Romanique Johnson of C.C Sweeting High School New Providence

2 Michelane Darville & Avery Hall of North Eleuthera & Preston Albury High School Eleuthera

3 Tanaz Thompson & Juliet Brown of Old Bight High School Cat Island

4 Labrano McPhee & Darius Barr of Anatol Rodgers High School New Providence


“The Young Chef Mystery Basket Challenge – Hot Food” for senior 2-member teams.

1 Shaelyn Sands & Ranad Davis of Samuel Guy Pinder Spanish Well, Eleuthera

2 Shemar Morgan & Paul Davis of CC Sweeting New Providence

3 Kenroy Ellis & Malik Moss of Old Bight High, Cat Island

4 Raymon Johnson & Deneisha Knowles of Akhephran International, New Providence.

On to the Future

Cesar Vazquez of Mahatma® Rice/ Riviana says of the National Young Chef Culinary Competition, “Throughout these 25 years we have seen fantastic stories. Many young students have competed in the National Young Chef Culinary Competition and have seen their lives change, thanks to it, becoming renowned chefs, developing careers in the hospitality sector,etc. 25 years wow! We could not be prouder of all the students that have competed, creating new and imaginative recipes, and we aim for another 25 years, at least.”

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