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Cabarrus Magazine

The 6th Chef Challenge Title Goes to AL Brown High School

May 30, 2018 02:14PM ● By Melanie Heisinger
A.L. Brown High School took the 6th Cabarrus Chef Challenge title, repeating their win from last December, facing Central Cabarrus High School. The theme for this Chopped-style challenge was all about fresh Farmers Market ingredients.

This is the 6th Cabarrus Chef Challenge event that has taken place and is put on by the Cabarrus Health Alliance (CHA). 
The time allotted for the competition is one hour. The high school team of six "prepared and served a panel of five judges a play on surf and turf with grilled salmon topped with mango chipotle salsa, roasted potatoes and steamed vegetables with a banana and strawberry frozen yogurt dessert topped with peanut butter and chocolate and a fresh fruit and pretzel garnish," a CHA press release stated.
They were also recognized with a traveling coin from the Concord Police Department.
Central Cabarrus High School took second place, serving a "farm fresh variety of chicken and salmon flavored with cilantro, honey and lemon," the press release continued. "They included a side of asparagus and whole wheat pasta salad along with a punch made of fresh fruit sweetened with honey."

Both teams competed in preliminary rounds of competition held at the end of April that included culinary teams from Hickory Ridge and Cox Mill High Schools. 
They entered the early May competition without any knowledge of what ingredients they would be required to use, just like the Food Network show "Chopped." 

“There was a lot of great flavor work and some technical errors here and there,” said Executive Chef John Blumreich with Restaurant 46 where the competition was held, “but overall I tip my hat to all of you for what you accomplished.”
All of the judges complimented the teams on their hard work and successful service, especially with the time constraints. Additional judges were:

·         Gary Gacek, Chief of the Concord Police Department
·         Mark Allison, Chef and Director of Culinary Nutrition for Dole Food Company
·         Megan Lambert, Chef and Senior Instructor, Johnson & Wales University, Charlotte
·         Dr. William Pilkington, CEO and Executive Director of CHA

Competition Organizer Meghan Charpentier, MPH, MS, nutrition coordinator for event-sponsor Cabarrus Health Alliance, commented, “The communications and teamwork was, by far, the best we’ve seen of any competition. These students possess confidence in the kitchen a lot of kids today don’t have. The support from their teachers and schools has been phenomenal. They’ve taken what they’ve learned and applied it successfully.” 

Content courtesy of the CHA press release.

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