Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Wonderful Adventure at the World Food Championships

World Food Championships 2014 

What excitement last week November 12th - 18th.

2014 World Food Championship (9) Categories
  • Barbecue
  • Chili
  • Sandwich
  • Burger
  • Dessert
  • Bacon
  • Recipe
  • Pasta
  • Seafood
The recipe category was based on the theme " Cheese". 
Judges were told that every recipe must feature and highlight cheese as the star of the dish.

 Kenmore Kitchen Coliseum 

My Signature Dish - This Isn't A Philly Cheesesteak

The Signature Dish is intended to allow the cook to put their best foot forward. Show the judges what you can do best with cheese.
After the signature round my sandwich put me in the Top Twenty coming in at # 13 with a score of 81.75%

Structured Build Dish  Picadillo w/Chili Cheese

The theme for Structured Build Dish was South of the Border. Mexican cuisine is a culinary favorite.  This round separates the proverbial "men from the boys"  by creating an even footing or structure, which will show our proven culinary skills.  After this round, my Picadillo earned me 87.875% and moved me from the Top 20 to the Top Ten 7th place.

Infused Ingredient Round - Cheese & Potatoes

Cheesy Potato Mushroom Gratin score 78.44%

The infused ingredient for the Recipe Category was Potatoes.  This round will show off a cook's culinary creativity and ability to pair featured ingredients in a manner that both creates an impressive finished product and also highlights cheese and potatoes. Now not expecting to make it to the top ten, I had to create a recipe on the fly to fix for this round.  My combined score for all three entries was 80.99%, which placed 4th in Top Ten Recipe Category.

I had so much fun doing this and I looking forward to next years 2015 World Food Championship which will be held in Kissimmee Florida November 1st - 8th 2015.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

My Ticket to World Food Championship - Las Vegas

Just A Pinch Recipe Contest - Blue Ribbon "This isn't a Philly Cheesesteak"
I am so excite to be competing in the World Food Championship.  Held in Las Vegas November 12th through the 18th.   My category is recipe and general theme is cheese.  My big cooking day is Thursday November 13th 2014.

My Asiago & Smoked Gouda Cheese Sauce is the star of this sandwich.

Cooking With Cheese 

See you in Vegas Baby

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Pumpkin Cheesecake

It’s time to usher in fall season with wonderful flavors of pumpkin.  This Pumpkin Cheesecake releases all the wonderful flavors of an old fashion pumpkin pie. This festive treat is lightly flavored with ginger-accented crust and all the wonderful spices that bring the aroma of fall in the air.

Recipe Essential Tools

  • Food Processor or Ziploc bag and a meat mallet
  • 9 or 10 inch springform pan
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Aluminum foil
  • Large roasting pan
  • Electric Mixer or large bowl and hand mixer
  • Medium size baking sheet
  • Rubber spatula
Prep Time; 30 minutes   Cooking Time: 1 hour and 30 minutes 
Inactive time: 5 hours     Servings: 12


For the Crust
  • 6 graham crackers
  • 6 gingersnap cookies
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • Pinch of course salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted

For cheesecake – note all ingredients for cheesecake should be at room temperature
  • 1        tablespoon butter, softened to grease springform pan
  • 5        8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
  • 2        cups sugar
  • 1        15-ounce can pumpkin puree
  • ½      cup sour cream
  • 4        large eggs
  • 2        teaspoons vanilla  extract
  • ½      teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½      teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½       teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½       teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • ½       cup all-purpose flour

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°.  Butter the sides of springform pan.  Wrap exterior of pan with double layer of aluminum foil.

  1. In the food processor, combine graham crackers, gingersnaps, sugar and pinch of salt. Pulse mixture until fine, then transfer to medium size bowl and add melted butter.  Blend well, then transfer crust mixture to springform pan.
If you do not have a food processor, then place graham crackers, gingersnaps in a Ziploc bag and use a meat mallet to crush into crumbs.

  1.  With a meat mallet or measuring cup, pat mixture into an even layer to fit the bottom of springform pan. Place crust in the freezer for about 15 minutes to set. Once crust has chilled, place springform pan on a medium size baking sheet and bake until crust is firm to the touch and golden brown.  This should take about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove crust for oven and let cool.

  1. In electric mixer with flat paddle attachment, add cream cheese and mix on medium speed until cream cheese is fluffy, about 2 – 3 minutes, scraping the sides as required.

  1. Add sugar and blend well then add pumpkin puree and sour cream. Mix well and add eggs one at a time, beating until combined; do not over mix. Remove mixing bowl from mixer and add vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and pumpkin spice.  With a spatula, blend spices until mix well.  Then add the flour and blend. 

  1. Pour cream cheese filling into prepared pan and place springform pan into roasting pan.  Then pour boiling water into roasting pan to reach halfway up sides of springform pan.  Bake 45 minutes, and then reduce oven temperature to 325°.  Bake until cheesecake is set about another 20 – 25 minutes. Turn oven off and leave oven door slightly open for about 30 minutes.  Then remove cheesecake from oven and let cool completely before refrigerating for at least 5 hours or overnight.

  1. Before serving, run a knife around the edge of the cake and then carefully remove the ring from springform pan.