December 4, 2023

Cayman Islands: Bodden Town Youth Cook Off pits boys against girls

Two teams of young chefs battled it out for the title of Bodden Town District Cook Off Champions on Saturday, 10 December 2016.

Organised by the Youth Services Unit of the Ministry of Community Affairs, Youth and Sports, the event was held at the Stacy Watler Pavilion in Lower Valley. Using stoves donated by Home Gas, the teams each prepared a chili appetiser, a lion fish entree, and a cold drink.

The cook off saw two teams compete namely: Team Bradley (Bradley McLaughlin, 14; and Tarec Francis, 15) and Team John Gray (Shaelah Parchment Henry, 12; and Rianna Jones, 11).

The challengers squared off in front of an audience who had not only come to cheer and support but were also eager to judge the chili appetiser in the peoples’ vote portion of the contest.

Team Bradley lightly sautéed the lion fish main, which was served with a fresh mango salsa made with sweet peppers, mangoes, onion and cilantro on a bed of white rice. The dish was accompanied by a tamarind drink.

Opponents Team John Gray countered with pan fried lion fish served on a bed of white rice and a garden salad. Their drink was fresh orange juice with ginger.

After tasting and conferring the event’s judges, Georganne Rankine, National Youth Culinary Coordinator and Brittney Bodden, National Youth Culinary Prefect, found in favour of Team Bradley. The team also won the people’s vote for their chili dish 20 votes to 12.

Ronald Francis who was supporting his son on Saturday said, “Tarec and Bradley weren’t at all nervous before the competition started and worked together well, while one cooked the other was sous chef and vice versa.”

According to the judges it was a fairly close-run thing. Both Brad and Tarec know that they’re going to have to cook out of their skins to win the national contest,” he added.

As well as receiving personalised chef jackets, Team Bradley earned the the title of Bodden Town Youth Cook Off champions and entry into the National Youth Cook Off at March’s Agriculture Show. The six teams will have up to two hours to prepare a three-course meal including a Caymanian dessert and drink and will be coached by a professional chef.

The 6.30 p.m. event finished at 9.30 p.m.

George Town District Cook Off takes place after the National Heroes Day festivities, Monday, 23 January 2017.

The event’s sponsors are lion fish suppliers C.U.L.L. and Ocean Frontiers, the New Self-Help Community Foundation, Home Gas Ltd., the Cayman Islands Agricultural Society, Miracle Brokers International, A. L. Thompson’s, Department of Environment, Cayman Culinary Society, Foster’s Food Fair IGA and the Youth Services Unit.

IMAGE Caption: GIS

BT Cookoff: (L-r) James Myles, Acting Head of Youth Services Unit, Team Bradley’s Tarec Francis and Bradley McLaughlin; and Team John Gray’s Rianna Jones and Shaelah Parchment Henry with Cook-Off judge Georganne Rankine.

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