02030The LISD Child Nutrition Program held its 11th Annual Iron Chef Competition where culinary students from Martin, Nixon, and Cigarroa High School participated. Each school came up with a delicious breakfast smoothie, loaded potato, and protein rich salad entrees. 

The competition allows students to experience competitive cooking. Based on the Iron Chef America Series on the Food Network, students are able to work on their ideas and prepare items such as portioning their protein and measuring any dry or liquid ingredients at their campus before the event. Items need to be assembled for approximately 60 guests and four judges in exactly an hour and 15 minutes. All dishes were to be submitted for judging before the time ends. 

“The experience of being here in Iron Chef is exciting and nerve wrecking, I’m not going to lie. It is my first contest as a culinary arts student and it is such a lovely experience. I would do it again if the opportunity presented itself,” MHS student Carolina Roman said.

The Mighty Mustangs took the Grand Champion title with their winning Southwest Scottie Salad and Sunrise Smoothie. The recipe for the salad  included: eggs, ground beef, homemade southwest blend, bread crumbs, flour, milk, black beans, cherry tomatoes, red onion, corn, lettuce, avocado, homemade chipotle ranch dressing, and tortilla strips.

The winning categories: 

  • Smoothie - Grand Champion - Nixon High School - Mustang Sunrise

  • Best Taste - Martin High School - Wake up Tiger Coffee Smoothie

  • Best Presentation - Nixon High School -Mustang Sunrise

  • Originality - Nixon High School- Mustang Sunrise

  • Protein Rich Salad - Grand Champion - Nixon High School - Southwest Scottie Salad

  • Best Taste - Cigarroa High School - Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad

  • Best Presentation - Nixon High School - Southwest Scottie Salad

  • Originality - Nixon High School - Southwest Scottie Salad

  • Baked Potato - Grand Champion - Cigarroa High School - BBQ Pulled Pork Loaded Potato

  • Best Taste - Nixon High School - Blaz'n Spud

  • Best Presentation - Cigarroa High School - BBQ Pulled Pork Loaded Potato

  • Originality - Cigarroa High School - BBQ Pulled Pork Loaded Potato

"It’s my third time participating in the Iron Chef event, and I always look forward to seeing the creativity of all the students. Iron Chef is how I got my start with LISD. As a chef, I was invited to judge the 9th annual competition. I was so impressed by the Culinary program and loved seeing so many people involved. I proudly get to be a part of that now, and I’m thankful to everyone for always showcasing our talented students," CHS Culinary Instructor Gilbert Cavazos said. 

The event was judged by local community members that included: Alison Flores, owner of Rooted956; Alyssa Canales, Regional Head Coach of OrangeTheory Fitness; Marcos Franco, Director of Operations at Chick-Fil-A; and Chef Tommee Johnson, Corporate Chef at Ettinger Rosini.

“One of the goals is to have our students showcase their wonderful talents as they are always leading the way with heart through their creative recipes,” CNP Director Robert Cuellar said. The winning categories will be considered for next year’s school menu in either the Salad Bar or the Coffee Bar.