NEW FEATURE!

Taste of Fond du Lac 2014

tastefdlTaste of Fond du Lac is right around the corner on Sunday, February 23, 2014 from 11a.m. – 5p.m. at the Fond du Lac Fairgrounds Expo Building. There will be numerous restaurants offering their delectable menu items, a silent auction, and onstage entertainment. Entrance tickets are available for only $1.50 at Festival Foods, Wagner Office Supply, and the Fond du Lac Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. Tickets at the door are $2 per person.

New this year will be Sliced, a Moraine Park Culinary Competition starting at 2p.m. Given the popularity of cooking shows on TV, this competition is sure to be a big hit!

Five Moraine Park Technical College Culinary Arts students face off for one of their toughest culinary challenges yet! Each student will have one hour to prepare an appetizer, entrée and dessert. Each will have the same ingredients to work with, but, to truly test their culinary prowess, each student will also have to create their dishes with five mystery items. They will be required to use at least one of the mystery ingredients in each of the three courses and they must use all five secret ingredients if they are to become the Sliced Champion!

Learn a little more about these five Moraine Park Culinary Arts student contestants competing in the inaugural Sliced competition!

Josh Sommer, first-year culinary arts student

Hometown: Rice Lake, Wis.
Favorite dish to prepare: Chicken alfredo
Favorite dish to eat: Pizza
Favorite type cuisine: Italian. It is a type of food I love to cook and eat. Plus I work at an Italian restaurant so that helps!
Strongest culinary skill: Knife skills.
Most concerned about in the competition: The mystery ingredients .
I am the best competitor because… I have quite a few years of restaurant experience that I’m sure will help me. Working as a line chef has helped me perfect my time management skills so the time constraints won’t be a concern.
After graduation I plan to… I want to work in the industry for a few more years but eventually I would love to own my own restaurant.

Chaislyn Preder, second-year culinary arts student
Hometown: St. Cloud, Wis.
Favorite dish to prepare: I like to challenge myself with things I’ve never tried before, so I’m constantly trying new entrées.
Favorite dish to eat: Anything with cheese. I am a true Wisconsinite.
Favorite type cuisine: I love German food. I have German heritage and I feel like it’s a good way to connect to my history. It’s all nice and hearty, too.
Strongest culinary skill: My creativity and focus on flavor profiles are my strongest culinary skills.
Most concerned about in the competition: I’m concerned about the time constraint. Preparing an appetizer, an entrée, and dessert all in about an hour is going to be difficult.
I am the best competitor because… I like to think on my feet when cooking. I love to look in the fridge and just think of something to whip up. My creativity is going to help me greatly.
After graduation I plan to… I would like to continue my education and get a bachelor’s degree in management.

Kayla Pier, second-year culinary arts student
Hometown: North Fond du Lac
Favorite dish to prepare: Any type of dessert! I love making cupcakes.
Favorite dish to eat: Anything with shrimp in it.
Favorite type cuisine: Japanese.
Strongest culinary skill: I would have to say my mise en place, which means everything in its place. I am good at keeping everything in order and managing my time well.
Most concerned about in the competition: I am nervous about the mystery items and the number of plates we will have to prepare.
I am the best competitor because… Once I know what I am making I am quick to execute my plan.
After graduation I plan to… Right after graduation I am heading to Europe for a study abroad trip with the culinary program. Once I get back I plan to continue learning the culinary business through work or further education. I would also love to own my own bakery someday!

Denis Ramos, second-year culinary arts student
Hometown: Bayonne, New Jersey
Favorite dish to prepare: Chicken Scallopini. This dish consists of a lightly breaded chicken breast pan fried in a butter sauce with mushrooms, capers and chicken stock served over rice.
Favorite dish to eat: I like a classic filet mignon with mashed potatoes.
Favorite type cuisine: It’s a tough choice between Spanish and Italian food. I am Puerto Rican so I always love to enjoy Spanish food and share with others the different types of Spanish cultures and the foods that they cook.
Strongest culinary skill: My creativity, especially in plate presentation.
Most concerned about in the competition: I am concerned about cooking all three dishes on stove-top burners. It is both challenging and intriguing for me to think that I will be cooking a dessert in a pan versus an oven but I am excited to challenge my creativity.
I am the best competitor because… because I really like to win!
After graduation I plan to… Since graduation is still a year away for me, I am exploring a few options including continuing my education or even traveling abroad to cook under a chef. I have even considered working on a cruiseliner. I love to travel and experience new food so that would be a great job for me.

Krista Klaas, second-year culinary arts student
Hometown: Princeton, Wis.
Favorite dish to prepare: I love spicy comfort foods! There’s no better dish to prepare than shrimp étouffée which is a spicy shrimp dish served over rice.
Favorite dish to eat: Butter chicken, also known as murgh makhani. It’s a classic Indian dish made of butter, tomatoes and spices all cooked in a tandoor.
Favorite type cuisine: Tibetan food is my favorite! I could eat a plate of steamed momos and a bowl of hot thuptka every day.
Strongest culinary skill: My ability to spice things.
Most concerned about in the competition: Time and equipment. Otherwise, bring it on!
I am the best competitor because… I am very organized. My mise en place skills are my strong point.
After graduation I plan to… I am a newlywed and my husband is from northern India. Together we would like to open an Indian/Tibetan fusion restaurant. I want to provide good, fresh food at prices everybody can enjoy.

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