Young ‘Future Chefs’ compete for honors

Finalists were selected out of 172 recipe submissions

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Abby Pearson, Emma Gorham, Josh McGuire and Grace Christensen have their creations judged at the annual Future Chefs Culinary Contest at Washougal High School.

Elementary student finalists from the Washougal and Camas school districts came to Washougal High School to compete in the Future Chefs Culinary Contest sponsored by Sodexo on Friday, March 6.

“While healthy eating can be a challenge for kids and parents, we challenged elementary school students to use their creativity and culinary skills to create healthy, after-school snack recipes as a part of Sodexo’s 2015 event,” said Mark Jasper, Washougal’s nutrition services director. “This national initiative was created to get students thinking about making healthy food choices while also encouraging them to get active and creative in the kitchen.”

This is the fifth annual elementary cooking competition at Washougal, with more than 52 recipe submissions and 10 finalists selected. This was the first year Camas participated. They had 120 recipe submissions and six finalists.

Finalists prepared and presented their creations before being assessed on criteria including originality, taste, ease of presentation, kid friendliness and use of healthy ingredients.

Washougal and Camas joined approximately 230 other school districts across the country holding Future Chefs events throughout February and March.

The grand prize winner in Washougal was Regis Vargo from Hathaway Elementary with his Fantastic Fruit Sushi. Sammy Preston of Grass Valley Elementary won with her Tap Wrap.

Healthy Attributes recipe winners were Josh McGuire from Gause Elementary with Better Banana Pudding and Avery Moses from Helen Baller Elementary with Apple Nachos. The Kid Friendly recipe winners were Gage Barrow from Cape Horn-Skye with Banana Delight and Eman Cameron from Dorothy Fox with Fruit Burritos.

Other finalist were:

Gause Elementary: Abby Pearson, Quick & Healthy Pumpkin Muffins; Emma Gorham, Asian Shrimp Salad; Grace Christensen, LGB Wrap; and Mikala Neyer, Sunny Strawberry & Cantaloupe Salad.

Hathaway Elementary: Erin Kutchera, Gazpacho Salsa; and Jacob Wilcox, Apple Delight.

Cape Horn-Skye Elementary: Lillian Conley, Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter & Strawberry Crepes.

Lacamas Elementary: Luke Jones, Right Muffin.

Woodburn Elementary: Zach Grima, Pepper-copia.

Prune Hill Elementary: Anabel Jiang, Tomato Monkeys.