Friday, July 24, 2009

Monroe College culinary students compete in Frito-Lay recipe contest

Monroe College Culinary Arts students in New Rochelle, N.Y., rose to a new “Pepsi Challenge” by using PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay snack products as key ingredients in casual-dining recipes for a recent contest. Competing for prize money, students chose from from among six different Frito-Lay chip products to create new variations for breading, toppings, stuffing and more.

First-place winner, Christine Gonzalez--a sophomore and December 2009 candidate for an associate's degree in Culinary Arts--was awarded a $500 prize for her recipe: Catfish Fingers coated in Original Frito-Lay Kettle Chips and dipped in chipotle aïoli (recipe follows). A second-place prize of $300 was awarded to Rosanne Peña, also a December 2009 candidate for an associate's degree in Culinary Arts, for her recipe for Frito-Lay Southwestern Fish Sliders: tilapia pieces cut from filets and seasoned with an assortment of ingredients, including beer, and then lightly coated in finely crushed Frito-Lay Original Corn Chips. Kareem David, a December 2009 candidate for a bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management, won third place and $200 for his Smoked Corn and Shrimp Fritter: shrimp breaded with Frito-Lay’s Thick Cut Tortilla Rounds and served with mango ketchup.

The competition was judged by guest-chefs from area restaurants and foodservice organizations including Michael Salvatore, executive chef, Sysco Food Services of Metro New York; Lee Tremble, owner, Iron Horse Inn, Westwood, N.J.; Jonathan Moosmiller, executive chef, Westchester Country Club; Michael Hofer, owner, SmokeHouse Chili-Grill, New Rochelle; and Jay Bigman, senior zone manager for PepsiCo. Monroe College dean of Hospitality Management and the Culinary Arts Frank C. Costantino and chef-instructor Tracy Zimmermann also served as judges. (Judges pictured with students above.)

Frito-Lay Catfish Fingers with Chipotle Aïoli Sauce
Christine Gonzalez, sophomore, Monroe College, New Rochelle, N.Y.

Yield: 12

3 lbs. catfish filet
12 c. Frito-Lay Kettle Cooked Potato Chips
4 eggs
4 T. Florida Bay Seasoning
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 c. dark beer
6 c. all purpose flour
Chipotle Aïoli Sauce

Method (1) Cut filets into 2 1/2" pieces. (2) Season fish with Florida Bay Seasoning, salt and pepper. (3) Beat eggs; add dark beer to mixture. (4) Grind potato chips coarsely. (5) Coat fish in flour, then egg/beer mixture and finally potato chips. (6) Deep fry coated catfish pieces in 350°F vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through. Serve with Chipotle Aïoli Sauce.

Chipotle Aïoli Sauce
4 c. mayonnaise
4 T. cilantro, chiffonade
6 chipotle peppers
1 T. lemon juice

Method (1) Combine mayonnaise, cilantro, chipotle peppers and lemon juice; chill well. Reserve.

Corbett becomes a member of The Honorable Order of the Golden Toque

The Honorable Order of the Golden Toque recently inducted chef Dean Corbett, owner and chef of Corbett's, An American Place, Equus Restaurant and Jack's Lounge in Louisville, Ky., as a member at its 47th annual meeting. The Honorable Order is the highest recognition a chef can receive in the United States. Faculty members of Sullivan University were on hand to congratulate chef Corbett. Sullivan University's National Center for Hospitality Studies director Tom Hickey, who is also the Grand Commander of the Order, was also present.

(l to r) Chef Tom Hickey, Sullivan University National Center for Hospitality Studies director and Grand Commander of The Honorable Order of the Golder Toque; Al Sullivan, Sullivan University chancellor; chef Dean Corbett, owner and chef of Corbett's, An American Place, Equus Restaurant and Jack's Lounge; chef David Dodd, associate director of National Center for Hospitality Studies; chef Derek Spendlove, Sullivan University baking and pastry arts department chair

Corbett was one of six chefs to be inducted last month in Frankenmuth, Mich. The ceremony took place at Zehnder's Restaurant, the largest family-owned restaurant in the country serving more than a million covers each year. The Honorable Order of the Golden Toque has a membership restriction of only 100 lifetime active members. Chefs may not apply for membership; they must be nominated by at least three active members. They are then put through a screening process which is held by the Acceptance Committee, which includes past Grand Commanders, Grand Commander and the Board of Directors. Final membership must be decided by all members at the annual meeting.

Originally founded in France by chef Pierre Berard, the Golden Toque was brought to the United States in 1961. It was established to recognize skillful chefs who have at least 20 years executive chef experience, have achieved professional accomplishments, have an interest in professional progress and are devoted to the culinary profession and arts.