Culinary Students Compete in Bulldog Top Chef

Students competed in groups to show off their culinary skills against local celebrity chefs.

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  • Junior Jennifer Martinez competed on a team against the Culinary II students and celebrity chefs. Her teammates were Jenna Kim, Caitlin Labianea and Logan Burford.

  • Judge Mary Quinn Ramer, President of Visit Lex, monitored students as they prepared their dishes during the Top Chef competition.

  • The teams of four had to divide tasks in order to create a culinary dish to present to the judges.

  • The competitors used a variety of ingredients to make their bruschetta dish including garlic, butter, tomatoes, herbs and white beans.

  • The teams of four worked together to prepare bruschetta for the judges. They had 75 minutes to create a dish for the judges using the required ingredients.

  • An assortment of vegetables had to be chopped using the students’ knife skills learned in Culinary II class.

  • The participants were given four main ingredients to use in their dish, including a French baguette.

  • Imani Robinson prepared a glaze for the bread right before it was put in the oven to crisp up.

  • The chef from Southside Technical Center, Jim Olert, chopped tomatoes to complement the meal he prepared. He competed as a “celebrity chef” against the students.

  • Senior Sarah Morrison preparing to move the chopped vegetables into the pot to cook during the Top Chef competition. Sarah was on the winning team.

  • The Dunbar Culinary II students wear these chef coats when they are cooking.

The Bulldog Top Chef competition was hosted on Oct. 25 by Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Mrs. Andrea Baker.

“It was sort of like the show Chopped. We didn’t know the recipe or the ingredients, so it was a surprise. We had to be able to come up with a recipe off the top of our heads and make something for the judges,” said senior competitor Sarah Morrison.

Dunbar students not only competed, but also learned new recipes and culinary skills from community chefs Jim Olert, who is the Chef Instructor at Southside Technical Center and James Baker who is the Chef at Mtani Catering.

The competitors had 75 minutes to create a dish using a baguette, white beans, herbs, butter, garlic, tomatoes and onions.

“Our judges and celebrity chefs were all impressed with our student’s’ advanced knife, organizational and safety skills,” said Mrs. Baker.

Sullivan University and Kentucky Prostart, a restaurant education association, awarded prizes to the winners of the competition: Sarah Morrison, Imani Robinson and Damon Deaton.

“I would like to thank everyone who helped make our 1st Annual P. L. Dunbar Top Chef competition a great success,” said Mrs. Baker.

“The event went on without a hitch and we all had a fabulous time.”

Another Top Chef competition is being planned for the Spring.