Sweet success for CHS culinary arts teams


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(Top) From left to right, Chef Sara Bridges, Rosie Keller, Alesa Noe, Cindy Lee, Chef Colour Linden and CHS ProStart teacher Kathy Vik pose after taking first place at the Alaska ProStart Invitational in Anchorage. (Below) From left to right, Sarah Shpard of AK CHARR and Amber Zembre of Alaska ProStart pose with Chugiak ProStart management team members Bailee Hughes and Kierra Perez after Hughes and Perez won first place in the management competition at the Alaska ProStart Invitational on Feb. 18 in Anchorage.

PhotoS courtesy of Kathy Vik

Chugiak High’s ProStart teams competed at the annual Alaska ProStart competitions in Management and Culinary Arts on Feb. 18-19 at the UAA Cuddy Center in Anchorage, where contestants from around Alaska gathered to compete and earn the privilege of representing Alaska at the National ProStart Competition.

Chugiak’s management team of Kierra Perez and Bailee Hughes won first place for their business plan for a new restaurant. The team created a restaurant focused on healthy foods, special dietary needs and an eclectic atmosphere. Bailee and Kierra explained their plan through a PowerPoint, CAD designs and display. This was followed with questions from the judges. The second stage of the competition included a problem-solving session where the team was challenged with various situations that may occur in the food industry. These included sanitation, safety, food preparation and business questions.

Also placing first for Chugiak was the team of Alesa Noe, Cindy Lee and Rosie Keller, who won the Culinary competition. Under the training of Chef Colour Linden and Chef Sara Bridges, the team developed menus and had 15 minutes to fabricate a chicken and do knife cuts. This exercise was followed by a 20 minute mise en place to set up for their hands on culinary experience. The team had one hour and two butane burners to prepare a three course meal in front of an attentive audience. The team’s menu included crab cakes and lemon cabbage slaw and herb mayo; cherry rubbed pork tenderloin wrapped in bacon served with sweet and sour Alaska carrots and pommes anna and pan jus; and poppy seed blini and raspberry caviar served with Meyer lemon creme fraiche and macerated fresh raspberries. The Chugiak team plated two of each dish and presented them to the judges in the allotted hour.

Both teams will head to the National ProStart Championships in Baltimore, Maryland at the end of April.

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