Junior Iron Chef Competition

January 11, 2015

The Bassett Research Institute’s Junior Iron Chef Competition was enormously popular among area middle and high school students in its first year and is back in 2015. This innovative program brings together teams from various schools to compete for bragging rights at a competition in which they are challenged to develop and prepare healthy, tasty dishes that could be prepared in a school cafeteria. This year’s competition is open to school teams in Delaware, Herkimer, Madison, Montgomery, Oneida, Otsego and Schoharie counties.

The 2015 event will be held Saturday, April 11 at the Foothills Performing Arts and Civic Center in Oneonta with the help of the Bassett Center for Rural Community Health’s 5-2-1-0 Everyday! program and the Rural Health Education Network of Schoharie, Otsego and Montgomery counties.

The Greater Utica Division of the American Heart Association provided funds for the event through a community impact grant.

The Junior Iron Chef Competition….

  • is a competition for teams of regional middle and high school students to develop and execute healthy recipes using a combination of local and USDA (commodity foods) that could be prepared in a school cafeteria;
  • offers a positive, hands-on experience with healthy food for youth, and has been shown to increase the likelihood that students will select and consume these foods;
  • provides an opportunity to learn about and build lifelong skills related to healthy food purchasing and preparation;creatively addresses school food issues and engages youth in the dialogue;
  • promotes the incorporation of local foods into school menus.

The competition is organized into two divisions, middle school and high school. Middle school teams compete in the morning and high school teams in the afternoon, with each division including up to 12 teams. Competing teams consist of three to five youth members and one to two supervising adult coaches. Team registration for the Junior Iron Chef is open through Jan. 30. School teams can register by contacting Doris Hill at doris.hill@bassett.org or by calling (607) 547-7696.

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