Emeril Lagasse To Add Menu Items From High School Chef Winners

Proceeds To Benefit New Orleans Culinary Arts Program At NOCCA

Posted by on Sep 12

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The New Orleans Center for Creative Arts will be starting its first-ever culinary arts program next year, aided in part by celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse.

Recently, Lagasse hosted a cooking competition for local teenage chefs in the New Orleans area to raise awareness for NOCCA. The winner would receive their dish featured on an Emeril restaurant menu. However, three young chefs stood out among the crowd: 14-year-old Victoria Farmer, 13-year old Chayil Johnson, and Janee Taylor, the eldest at 17. After tasting each dish, Lagasse declared the competition a three-way tie.

Farmer's winning dish was Creole rabbit with roasted butternut squash & spicy corn cakes. Johnson made quite the impression by serving apricot-glazed roasted duck with butternut squash risotto, and Taylor presented a New Orleans-inspired "Surf & Turf" -- grilled ribeye, seafood mashed potatoes, and Cajun crab boiled asparagus.

Each winning dish will be served at each of Emeril Lagasse's restaurants during the month of October. Additionally, $10 from each sale will go to Lagasse's foundation to help fund a new culinary arts kitchen at NOCCA. The organization currently provides education in the arts for dance, music, writing, visuals, and theater.

Lagasse also announced that his foundation will be donating an additional $100,000 to assist in funding a four-year culinary arts program at the school.

Source: The Associated Press

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