“This competition is a really fun and exciting way to get kids excited about food,” said Junior Iron Chef Coordinator Amy Gifford. “The tweens and teens who participate learn so much … not just about cooking, but about working together and tapping their own creativity.”
Applications will be accepted until Jan. 16, on a first-come, first-served basis. The early bird registration fee is $130 until Dec. 16. After that, the registration fee increases to $150. Registration is limited to the first 75 teams, consisting of three to five students in 6th-8th grade, or 9th-12th grade. Applications are available online at www.jrironchefvt.org.
The Junior Iron Chef Vermont 2016 competition will be held on March 19 at the Champlain Valley Exposition in Essex Junction. The contest guidelines are rigorous, intended to demonstrate the real-life challenges that food services face in creating healthy meals for schools. Two heats will be held the day of the competition, with 90 minutes of cooking time per heat. Winning teams receive prize packages, and have an opportunity to feature their recipes in the Vermont Statehouse Cafeteria.
Junior Iron Chef Vermont is hosted by Vermont FEED, a collaborative Farm to School Project of NOFA-VT and Shelburne Farms. From the start, the event has been committed to providing middle and high school students with a hands-on experience cooking nutritious, farm-fresh foods. When the event began in 2008, 35 teams participated. Last year, 260 students from every corner of the state competed on 61 teams.