Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cooking Up a Storm at CKCA Alumni Competition

Jasmine Einalhori and Lauren Maddahi

Gitty Lowinger and Hillel Kober

David Shatzkamer and Dena Borsand

(below) Esther Mendelevich and Liz Kratz

Wildly different interpretations of Jerusalem artichoke, basmati rice and a whole chicken were the order of the day at CKCA's first alumni competition event, held last Saturday night. The three items were part of the Iron Chef-style "market basket" challenge, which was to cook a full meal using the protein and the two additional secret ingredients.

Competing were two-person teams Gitty Lowinger and Hillel Kober, Liz Kratz and Esther Mendelevich, Dena Borsand and David Shatzkammer, and Lauren Maddahi and Jasmine Einalhori.

Chef Avram Wiseman and CKCA Director Jesse Blonder served as judges for the event. Chef Avram said his personal highlights of the event were a salad made by the winning team of Lauren and Jaz, of raw Jerusalem artichokes marinated with red onion, citrus and spices, and a basmati rice ball ("genius") made by Esther and Liz. Chef Avram also applauded the creative plating of Shatzi and Dena's team as well as Hillel and Gitty's inspired use of roasted red pepper to add color to their dish. Jesse particularly enjoyed the pesto made by Shatzi and Dena and Esther's hoisin-glazed chicken.

In the end, Lauren and Jaz were crowned the winners, and they won $150 to put toward CKCA recreational or master classes. A great time was had by all. Everyone, by the end of the night, was ready to schedule a rematch!

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