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Elizabethton High Wins CareerQuest Tennessee Culinary Challenge

CareerQuest Tennessee Culinary Challenge is a regional competition for high school culinary students across Northeast Tennessee. Students demonstrate their knowledge in knife skills, cooking methods, presentation skills, time management, budgeting, teamwork, sanitation, and more. This year, Sullivan East High, Unicoi High, West Ridge High, Elizabethton High, Tennessee High, and Science Hill High competed.

Students receive feedback from professional chefs in the region. Their work is judged based on taste, presentation, timeliness, teamwork, and other elements. This not only gives students a chance to grow in their culinary abilities, but also gives them the ability to interact and learn from industry professionals. Each school is provided with a list of required ingredients that must be featured in their final presentation.

This year's winning team from Elizabethton High School, secured the trophy with their menu of mulligatawny soup with brie crostini, kale and brie salad with madras curry-blood orange vinaigrette, blood orange suprémes, and chicken skin and an entree of pan seared chicken breast with sumac and ancho-spiced cauliflower, kale, carrots ginger-tomato chutney, basmati rice. The team included Emily Dunlap, Zachary Crow, Chloe Kono, Logun Colvin, Kiera Wolfe, and Braden Cochran.

This year's tasting judges include chefs Jamie Allen, Karla Grimaldi, Anthony Lastra, and Tony Mammarella. "They are the future of this profession and we are excited to see the skill set that is evident here today," shared Regional Executive Chef Anthony Lastra from Morrison Healthcare. Corporate Executive Chef Tony Mammarella of KVAT Food Stores added that "these students are young, and they've taught us a few things about bold flavors, and you better believe I am going to borrow some of their ideas."

In addition to the tasting judges, chefs from across the region volunteered in the kitchen to observe students, judge knife skills, and observe sanitary conditions. This is in addition to the timing judges and runners who helped make this year's event a success.

The event would not be possible without the sponsorship and support of organizations such as Food City, Blackthorn Club, Morrison Healthcare, Levy Restaurants, and Bristol Motor Speedway.

For questions about this or other CareerQuest Tennessee events, visit or contact Lottie Ryans,

For questions about this or other District News, contact Mark Stevans,

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