Culinary Challenge Fires Up!
Tom Siegel, CEC
The University of Montana Dining Services
University Center, Campus Drive
Missoula, Montana 59812
Phone: (406) 243-6173
To my fellow Culinary Professionals:
Ready set cook! Pans will be sizzling, knives will be sharpened and the heat turned up high as The Continental Region launches its Ninth Annual Culinary Challenge Cooking Competition. I am very excited to have you compete at Concordia College in beautiful Moorhead, Minnesota next February 23, 2009. The winner of this competition will represent the Continental Region at the National Competition in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in July. And Yes, I should also mention they will earn exclusive bragging rights as the Region’s Number-One-Top Competition Chef!
Overview of this year’s competition:
• This will be an ACF Sanctioned K/9 Regional Taste/ Customized Competition.
• This year’s mandatory ingredient to feature is 2 each 16-18 ounce rainbow trout.
• The recipe must be for four portions of an original hot entrée.
• The entrée, side dishes and sauces must create a nutritionally balanced plate.
• The fish must be fabricated during the allotted cooking time to show knife skills.
• The primary heat source for this competition will be two induction burners.
• The time limit will be 75 minutes in total length:
5 minutes to set the station
60 minutes to cook and begin plate up
5 minutes for service window
5 minutes to clean up and exit station
• Entries must be received by Sunday January 11, 2009.
• For a complete set of rules and entry form contact Tom Siegel at firstname.lastname@example.org
So are you ready for some competition? Up for honing your best recipe? And do you have room on your mantel for a three foot tall trophy with your name on it? If the answer is yes, then it’s time to get cooking! I’m looking forward to seeing you in February ’09.
Tom Siegel, CEC, Biography
The public got its first taste of Tom Siegel’s culinary talents when he served fellow Boy Scouts a boiled New England dinner cooked over a campfire one cold January day. By age 15, Siegel had earned his cooking merit badge and title of head chef for his troop. By age 17, after five years of planning menus and cooking for the Scout camps, he knew he wanted to be a professional chef.
As the Certified Executive Chef for the University of Montana, Siegel has come a long way from cooking over campfires in the woods of his native upstate New York. He had completed his chef’s apprenticeship and graduated from the SUNY at Morrisville in 1970. This prepared him for chef’s positions in well known hotels in Lake Placid, NY and eventually his own restaurant in Montana. The Montana Chefs Association of the American Culinary Federation (ACF) elected him the 1995 and 2008 Chef of the Year. Tom earned a silver medal in the ACF Northwest Culinary Competition by fashioning a one-sixth-scale baby grand piano out of a 300 pound block of ice. In 1999 he received the National Association of College & University Food Services (NACUFS) Region VIII President’s Award and in 2000 received The University of Montana’s Outstanding Staff Award. Also in 2000 Siegel was awarded a Staff Professional Development grant where by he attended the Culinary Institute of America. He founded of The U of M Culinary Skills Workshop Series, Dining Services Culinary Faculty and Culinary Professional Career Ladder. Tom has won an ACF Bronze and Gold medals in Regional and National NACUFS Culinary Challenge competitions. He has attended culinary schools in Mexico and Italy and is committed to life-long learning.
Tom was co-founder of the University of Montana’s Wild Game Cooking Show and Creative Cooking for Good Health Series. He has served on the NACUFS Culinary Challenge Competition Committee. Recently Tom won the Gold Medal in the Second Annual Montana Culinary Excellence Competition. Siegel is also a registered ServSafe trainer with the NRA. In his spare time he enjoys the reasons why he came to Montana, fly fishing and backpacking.