From the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services:
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The search for Florida’s next great student chef has begun with the start of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ “Student Chef Cook-Off.” Students in 4th through 12th grade can submit snack recipes featuring Florida-grown products for a chance to compete in the regional and state cook-off. The deadline to enter is Sunday, Sept. 13. For more rules and to submit an entry, visit FreshFromFlorida.com/Cookoff.
Entry requirements include:
• Must be a Florida student in 4th through 12th grade.
• Must create an original snack recipe and submit with a photo.
• The recipe must contain one fresh fruit or fresh vegetable grown in Florida.
• The recipe must have clear directions, provide four snack-size servings and be prepared in 45 minutes or less.
• Recipe must promote good nutrition and healthy eating habits.
Students in six regions will submit recipes that will first be judged on nutrition, presentation/ appeal and originality. The grade categories are 4th through 5th grade, 6th through 8th grade and 9th through 12th grade. Three qualifying round winners from each grade category will be invited to cook their recipes for a panel of judges at Publix Aprons Cooking Schools in their region.
Finalist rounds will be held:
• Oct. 3: Tampa – Central/West
• Oct. 10: Orlando – Central
• Oct. 17: Sarasota – West
• Oct. 24: Boca Raton – South
• Nov. 7: Tallahassee – Northwest
• Nov. 14: Jacksonville – Northeast
Each regional cook-off recipe will be judged in person on taste, originality, presentation/appeal and technique. Third-place winners will receive a $50 gift card, second-place winners will receive a $75 gift card, and first-place winners will receive a $100 gift card. All winners will also receive a certificate to attend a free Publix Aprons Cooking School class.
First place winners in the 9th through 12th grade will continue to the state finale cook-off at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa on Feb. 6, 2016. The winner will receive a $500 gift card and title of the “Fresh for Florida Kids Student Chef” for 2015-16.