McMinnville H.S. Wins 2017 Oregon ProStart Culinary Championships
[February, 19, 2017 - Salem, OR] – The challenge for the student chefs was to prepare a three-course gourmet meal with only two butane burners in under an hour. McMinnville High School (pictured) pulled this off with excellence, winning top honors at the Oregon ProStart® Culinary High School Championships hosted by the Education Foundation of the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLAEF) on February 19, 2017 in Salem, Oregon.
McMinnville High School’s winning menu included:
Dungeness Crab Miso Custard - Hot miso custard base topped with Oregon dungeness crab, edamame, a salad of baby bok choi, and daikon; garnished with pickled paysanne rainbow carrot and sautéed beech mushrooms.
Thai Shrimp Cakes - Fresh lime-infused shrimp cakes, atop a platform of purple sticky rice; served alongside garlic steamed gai lun with a duo of yellow curry coconut cream sauce and carrot puree garnished with a nest of fried rice noodles, green onion and kaffir lime leaves.
Bittersweet Truffle Torte - Steamed flourless chocolate torte filled with a dried sour cherry compote glazed in chocolate and crushed in pistachios; accompanied by a tart cherry juice reduction, and vanilla bean cream anglaise; garnished with a sugar spiral.
ProStart, one of the nation’s largest industry-supported career and technical education (CTE) programs, teaches high school students culinary and management skills needed by restaurant, hospitality and foodservice employers. Focused on culinary techniques and restaurant management skills, this competency-based curriculum also includes real-life restaurant experiences. The Oregon ProStart state competition is the capstone of this two-year program, providing a public opportunity for students to showcase what they have learned.
Final results for the culinary competition:
First place – McMinnville High School
Second place – Bend High School
Third place – Sabin-Schellenberg Center
Fourth place – Tualatin High School
Fifth place – Willamette High School
Additional awards presented at the event:
Best Overall Teamwork – McMinnville High School
Foster Farms Student of the Year: Marya Agatucci, Bend High School
Teacher of the Year: Molly Ziegler, Bend High School
Mentor of the Year: Andrea Phillips, Tualatin High School
“The atmosphere at this event was electric,” said Wendy Popkin, executive director of ORLAEF. “The ProStart program does a remarkable job preparing high school students with fundamental skills such as communication, teamwork, time management and professionalism needed to enter the workforce.” Students also vie for their share of over $160,000 in scholarships and prizes.
The team from McMinnville High School will head to the 2017 National ProStart Invitational® April 28-30, 2017, in North Charleston, SC. These Oregon champions also receive scholarships from local and national culinary schools to help further their careers in the restaurant and foodservice industry.
Currently 36 Oregon schools, with more than 3,000 students participate in the ProStart training program. Internationally, ProStart includes 137,300 students in 1,768 schools and technical centers across the United States, Guam, Europe, and Asia.
As the philanthropic foundation of the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association, ORLAEF supports and promotes diverse career, educational, and public service opportunities within the hospitality industry to create a vibrant industry that contributes to Oregon’s economic livelihood and its citizens’ quality of life. Oregon’s restaurant and foodservice industry is comprised of over 9,000 foodservice locations and has a total economic impact of $8 billion - making it the cornerstone of the economy and one of the state’s largest employers.