Culinary Arts Competition

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Magazine Article / March 1, 2013 / Project number: Excelsior 2013 SP 01

For the second year in a row the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) were invited to participate in the United States Military Culinary Arts competition. This is an annual event held at the U.S. Quartermaster School and the Joint Culinary Center of Excellence at Fort Lee Virginia. Teams from around the world participate in this event to showcase their culinary skills. All three elements of the Canadian Forces were represented on this year's team.  This year’s team members were: MWO Mercier, LS Lassonde-CFB St Jean, LS Mollins-CFB Halifax, MS Incitti-CFB Borden and Cpl Shier, an Air Reservist working at 8 Wing Trenton.

Prior to the competition, the team spent a week in Borden practicing meal preparation and plate presentation, all under the watchful eye of MWO Mercier the team leader. Typical meals prepared during this preparatory week included, braised rabbit, duck comfit, roasted game hens, lamb, salmon and other assorted sea foods. MWO Mercier would critique each dish on both taste and presentation.

The team departed for Fort Lee on the 3rd of March for the four day competition. LS Lassonde and LS Mollins were selected to compete in the Black Box competition, where each team was given mystery ingredients and 30 minutes to plan a menu and 3 1/2 hours to execute a four course meal, using all ingredients from the black box.  MS Incittti and I performed a demonstration on how to prepare gravlax (cured salmon) and smoke salmon. Teams from the U.S.A. , Germany, France and Canada participated in this year’s black box event.  The gold medals went to the U.S. and German teams, Silver medals were awarded to Canada and France. This was an exciting and fulfilling experience and an honour and a privilege to represent Canada.

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