Wind Creek to host contest for chefs

Published 2:30am Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Becoming a master at culinary art may be a dream of would-be chefs around the area.

A Culinary Masters Chef Challenge Competition is set for later this month at Wind Creek Casino & Hotel and will allow one lucky chef to walk away with the title of Master at the close of the two-day event.

Wind Creek Chef Stafford DeCambra is coordinating the event to be held in the Coosawada ballroom and the Cooking Studio at the Poarch location. The event is open to the public.

“Contestants for the event aren’t chosen and there are no prerequisites for any competitor that wants to compete,” DeCambra said. “Any chef, culinarian or student from across the United States can participate in this or any American Culinary Federation sanctioned culinary competition nationwide.”

The event will span two days on Monday and Tuesday, May 23 and 24 beginning at 6 p.m. Monday and 7 a.m. Tuesday. The competition is hosted by the Poarch Creek Chapter of the American Culinary Federation and Wind Creek Casino & Hotel.

“We are co-sponsoring this event free to the public,” DeCambra said. “Food service industry partners are also helping with the event.”

DeCambra said there are several categories of competition and competitors should be aware of all guidelines associated with the event.

“All of the traditional competition categories are defined in the American Culinary Federation’s professional culinary manual for participants,” DeCambra said. “The expectations of specific standards and general guidelines of each category should be reviewed by participants.”

Although the event is open to anyone who chooses to compete, DeCambra said no local contestants have stepped up for the event.

“Right now we don’t have any local chefs participating,” DeCambra said. “We do have chefs coming from Birmingham and Montgomery and have our chefs and culinarians of Wind Creek participating. We also have some out of state participation from Florida and Texas.”

DeCambra said anyone interesting in participating in the competition is asked to complete and application and submit it to sponsors of the event.

Chefs and spectators are invited to join the audience for the live cooking event.

Megan Young, public relations coordinator for Wind Creek Casino & Hotel, said the event could give cooks of all skill levels a chance to learn something new.

“We hope spectators will be inspired as the competition showcase their talents at the challenge,” Young said. “The focus of this event is on raising the standards of culinary excellence and professionalism while nurturing the creativity of individual chefs.”

Young said the event will be judged by professional chefs sanctioned by the American Culinary Federation.

“As an additional treat to this food expo, the president of the ACF and the chairman of the American Academy of Chefs will be on hand to share thoughts, comments and vision of the challenge both locally and nationally.”

DeCambra said although the original entry deadline has passed late registration may still be possible.

For additional information or to obtain an application for the challenge, contact DeCambra or Donnah Baptist at Wind Creek Casino & Hotel at 368-8007.

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