Sammy Jo Claussen Named “Best Chef”

Posted by on Jul 26

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sammy jo best teen chef 09Chef Sammy Jo Claussen is becoming a rising star in the culinary world. This award-winning artist has already rubbed shoulders with the likes of Mario Batali, Rachael Ray, and Guy Fieri -- and she's still in high school.

Sammy Jo currently holds the title of "Best Teen Chef In the Country." She earned this award at the annual Art Institute of Charlotte cooking competition, where she was asked to prepare a soup, salad, and catfish entree in an hour and a half.

She prepared breaded and pan-fried catfish with a liquid-free sauce. Her winning strategy? Color. Å“They gave us a lot of yellow. When designing a plate, you have to have a lot of color to look at. I had to decide how to get color on the plate. That's where the sauce came in.

Sammy Jo's rise to success is inspirational in more ways than one. She is currently suffering from numerous conditions including dyslexia, ADHD, ADD, and bipolar disorder. When she entered high school, she says she was only at a fourth-grade reading level.

Å“I know people that are dyslexic that say they can't do this because of it, but I didn't let that get to me, she said. Å“If I can do it then they can do it, too. I never gave up; no one should give up on themselves.

Her winning prize is a full-ride scholarship to the International Culinary School at The Art Institutes International in Kansas City. Also included is an internship at the Food Network studios as well as a seven-course dining experience at a Food Network celebrity chef restaurant.

Sammy Jo plans to travel the world after culinary school graduation, foraging for cultural inspiration and new flavors. She also plans to open a Western-themed restaurant in Texas shortly thereafter.

Source: LJ World

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