TALLAHASSEE — The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services encourages innovative high school students to showcase their culinary skills by entering the department’s “Fresh From Florida” Student Chef Cook-Off. Teams of two to four students can submit original recipes featuring Florida-grown products for the chance to earn prizes and have their meal served in school cafeterias. The deadline to enter is Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2017. For rules and to submit an entry, visit FreshFromFlorida.com/StudentCookOff.
Entry requirements include:
- Applicants must be a Florida student in 9th through 12th grade.
- The recipe must meet National School Lunch meal pattern and nutrition standards.
- The recipe must incorporate at least two Florida ingredients from the approved list [ ].
- The recipe must incorporate at least one USDA commodity item from the approved list [ ].
- The recipe must be prepared in less than two hours.
- The recipe must be replicable by school nutrition professionals.
Students are encouraged to form teams of two to four and submit their recipes to be judged on: taste, appearance, creativity, best and most use of local ingredients, best and most use of USDA commodity foods, school food service appropriate and execution. Finalists will be chosen to compete in three regional cook-offs, which will be held in Miami on Saturday, Oct. 21; Orlando on Saturday, Oct. 28; and Jacksonville on Saturday, Nov. 4.
The first-place winners of each region will advance to the finale event at the Florida Capitol’s Taste of Florida Agriculture Day on Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018. The winning “Fresh From Florida” Student Chef Cook-Off team will receive a Florida Prepaid 529 Savings Plan and an apprenticeship with celebrity chef Art Smith, and their recipe will be added to school food service menus so that Florida schools have the opportunity to serve the meal.
Born in Jasper, Florida, celebrity chef Art Smith has earned two James Beard awards, served as executive chef to former Florida governors Bob Graham and Jeb Bush, and spent 10 years as Oprah Winfrey’s personal chef. Smith has also authored four cookbooks and opened multiple restaurants, most recently Homecoming at the Disney Springs, which highlights classic Florida dishes using locally-sourced ingredients.
—Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
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