By Nicole Chiam
Now in its sixth year, WA’s Chef Challenge was held on 18 March at Armadale Senior High School. Contestants competed to cook the best dish on the day. The challenge was open to all club chefs, cooks and volunteers who cook at a community club. Dishes were judged by a panel of judges and students on taste, food wastage, creativity, presentation and technique.
The day was made up of 2 sessions and 2 rounds. In Round 1, each chef had to cook their take on the classic Chicken Parmigiana. Who would have thought the classic Chicken Parmi could be improved?! There were some quality classics and some tasty new inspirations! It wasn’t all smooth sailing with a couple of chefs encountering a few hiccups along the way. However, a bit of impromptu improvisation and they quickly moved on to deliver delicious dishes; a testament to the skills of our contestants.
Round 2 was each chef’s own Signature Dish. An opportunity for each contestant’s personality and experiences to shine through. We were not disappointed, with an array of different dishes plated up ranging from Asian inspired meals to refined Australian classics. Several staff, students, volunteers (and maybe even the judges..) could be seen taking mental notes of what they might try at home. It is not every day that you get to watch a commercial chef in action up close and personal.
Thank you to our various sponsors and supporters of the day; Stoddart, Birch & Waite, Arcus Australia, Armadale Senior High School (for hosting us), Packaging R Us, and our various volunteers for the extra pairs of hands. We would also like to thank our amazing judges, Michelle Tilly, Senad Brnjak, Brendan Dugan and the Armadale Senior High School helpers (Rebecca Ford and Elaine) and students. Finally a big shout out to the chefs that came down and participated in the circumstances. It would not have been possible without your commitment.
Congratulations to George Danas from the Melville Glades Golf Club and Sanjeewa Samarakoon from the Mandurah Offshore Fishing & Sailing Club for taking out the Students’ Choice Awards (for Round 1) in their respective session.
The WA’s Chef Challenge winner will be announced at the Club Industry Awards for Excellence which has been postponed due to COVID-19. No doubt it will be a great way for us to all come together and celebrate an even stronger community on the other side of these tough times!
2020 WA’s Chef Challengers
Anthony Wall, Byford & Districts Country Club
Craig Taylor, Stirling Club
George Danas, Melville Glades Golf Club
John O’Hara, Nedlands Golf Club
Linda Ly, Melville Glades Golf Club
Matthew Longshaw, Cottesloe Golf Club
Peter Croese, Royal Perth Golf Club
Ronald Domingo, East Fremantle Yacht Club
Sanjeewa Samarakoon, Mandurah Offshore Fishing & Sailing Club