From left, Richelle Zacharias, Susana Alejandre and Tania Diaz put the finishing touches on their spinach salad during the Feb. 5 FCCLA competition at CVHS.
Marshall Ciampi prepares a mustard dressing for the Feb 5 FCCLA competition.
|Students in the CVHS C-CAP classes participated in an on-campus competition on Feb. 5 in preparation for the preliminary C-CAP event to be held later this month in Phoenix.|
It's coming down to the wire for Chino Valley FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America) students, especially the Careers in Culinary Arts Program.
Students in the CVHS C-CAP classes participated in an on-campus competition on Feb. 5 in preparation for the preliminary C-CAP event to be held later this month in Phoenix.
"Six teams are competing for the FCCLA State Conference," said program instructor Dolisa Pehl. "If they are not scoring proficient, we are not taking them. The judges are going to be brutal."
Marshall Ciampi and his team, made up of fellow juniors Katelyn Wright and Andrea Cox, put their heads together to design their presentation before heading into the kitchen.
"We're making a spinach salad with mustard dressing. We get to design it ourselves, but we have to make two identical plates for the judges," said Ciampi, who plans on a career in the kitchen in the future. "I want to eventually have my own restaurant after I get out of the Marines."
Ciampi said he enjoys competitions like this, in which the 30-minute time restriction plays a big part in design and preparation, but he also enjoys the creative freedom of leisure cooking at home.
Partner Wright said that while she doesn't plan on making a living over the stove, the skills she's learning in C-CAP will benefit her in whatever field she eventually chooses.
"I enjoy cooking and I sometimes cook at home, but I'm also learning a lot of leadership skills in this class," she said.
Undecided if she will pursue cooking as a vocation, Cox also is finding ways to put her cooking skills to use at home, with one major obstacle.
"The hardest part for me is to work with meat," said Cox, a vegetarian. She added that working in the kitchen is a way for her to build confidence, a quality that will transfer to any occupation.
The judging panel for the Feb. 5 competition was made up of several members of the faculty, a few civic club volunteers, and local chef Eric Vernier, owner of Big Daddy E's Barbecue.
Vernier strolled through the kitchen, observing and taking notes. What caught his eye?
"I see a lot of writing," said Vernier. "I would have liked to see the planning stages done before this, but it looks like they're shaping up OK."
In addition to the culinary competition, the FCCLA students also participated in illustrated talks and presentations, including CVHS FCCLA Chapter President Delia Sotelo, who delivered a presentation on publicity and promotion of FCCLA events.
One of the events Sotelo is promoting is the FCCLA Week at CVHS that includes visits by Heritage Middle School students, who Sotelo hopes represent future FCCLA members.
For more information on this and other FCCLA events visit www.azfccla.org.