Students cook away at the JCCC competition

Katya Tarabrina, Staff Writer

Culinary Arts students travelled to Johnson County Community College to compete in a cooking competition last Friday. Seniors Mason Jackson, Tristan Brown and Shaylin Petitfrere as well as junior Allison Doud placed eight out of 10 teams at the competition, which ran from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.  

Students were pleased with their placements, especially because it was a new experience for many of them.

“For most of us it was our first competition so we didn’t do too bad.” senior Shaylin Petitfrere said.

The first place prizes for winning were scholarships to JCCC. Despite placing in eighth, the students from Manhattan still won shirts and a new blender.

Students had to overcome a few obstacles during the competition, but it was their own worries that proved to be their bigger challenge.

“In all honesty, it was a little nerve wracking,” junior Allison Doud said.

Doud hopes to open up her own bakery someday. She and Petitfrere have been interested in cooking since they were children.

This isn’t the only competition Rippert’s class is planning to compete in this year. Students have the upcoming Kansas ProStart Invitational in March to prepare for.

According to the Kansas Restaurant & Hospitality Association website, ProStart is a “premier high school competition focused on restaurant management and culinary arts.” It brings high school students around the state of Kansas together to have a competition for scholarships and state-wide recognition. Metals will be awarded to the winning places.

The competition is supposed to have different cooking utensils than the JCCC competition.

Students are hoping to build off of their experience at the JCCC competition to be at their best for ProStart.

“Now that we know where our strengths lie, we are going to build on that,” Petitfrere said.

Petitfrere offered advice for students who want to participate in cooking competitions in the future.

“Don’t let your nerves get to you just … compose yourself and think ahead,” she said.