Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 17, 2015 (SKNIS): At least six chefs, resident in St. Kitts and Nevis, have accepted the challenge to take part in the 2015 Independence Cook-Off which takes place in Independence Square, Friday, September 18, starting at 9 a.m.

Cook-Off Coordinator Aphonso Clarke has revealed that the chefs will have to create dishes from a mystery basket of four main ingredients.  They will also have access to a pantry from which they are free to choose ingredients.  Coordinator Clarke further detailed that all of the main ingredients in the mystery basket are locally produced foods and that two of them are meats.  He said that this speaks to self reliance and support for what is local “as we celebrate the 32nd Anniversary of Independence.”

As all meals must be prepared on a grill, participants have to arrive at the competition equipped with a barbeque grill (no electric grills are allowed) along with the necessary coal, matches, oil and other things required to fire-up the grill.  They must also bring their tools of trade such as knives and all other requisite cooking utensils.  Each contestant is allowed to bring along an assistant of his or her choice. Mr. Clarke further assured that in order to take part in the competition, all chefs have to provide a valid food-handlers permit.

The rules of the cook-off challenge require competitors to set up their cooking stations or booths between 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. when the competition officially begins.  The meals must be presented to the judges between 12:30 and 1 p.m. The competitors are allowed to sell their culinary creations after the judges have decided the first, second and third place winners.  Prizes will also be given to the best dressed chef and the best decorated cooking station/booth.  Certificates will also be presented to all participants. Winners will be announced immediately following the judging.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for patrons to come out and support our own,” Mr. Clarke emphasized, noting that the judges are from the local hotels and they come with a wealth of experience.  “Independence is a time for us to be patriotic and we can show our support for our local creative chefs, not forgetting that in the same venue there will also be the Arts and Craft Fair, and a Kids Zone especially for the entertainment of the children.”

The savoury dishes will be on sale following the declaration of the winners and the chefs will also be free to prepare additional meals for sale following the competition.


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