New contest to pit home cooks against downtown chefs

emoody@beaufortgazette.comJuly 2, 2013 

Most everyone who putters in the kitchen has "that" recipe -- their go-to, or their most-requested, or their family-secret.

Main Street Beaufort, USA, is looking for residents willing to pit their special dishes against chefs from local restaurants for a new contest this August.

The Downtown Plate Crawl: Home-cooks vs. Downtown Chefs, will be Aug. 15. Submissions from home cooks are needed by July 18, executive director LaNelle Fabian said.

It's a welcome challenge for professional chefs like Beth Shaw at Breakwater Restaurant, 203 Carteret St.

"I like to try and participate in things like this," she said. "I think we should get more people to participate in and do fun things like this."

Shaw said she'll probably steer away from desserts, but other than that, she doesn't know what kind of dish she'll be inclined to challenge.

Up to 10 home cooks will be selected. Participating downtown chefs will chose a dish to challenge, but will not know who they are challenging until after they pick.

"Chefs will not be limited to their own menu ideas," Fabian said. "They can dust off their grandmothers' cookbooks too."

Chefs and cooks will make 100 tastings of about three bites apiece. Residents will "crawl" the downtown from restaurant to restaurant, try the entries in blind taste tests, and vote for their favorite.

Winners will be announced at the end of the night, Fabian said.

"I want people to come out of the woodwork and blow some chefs away," she said.

Home cooks will receive prizes such as dinner for two, while chefs will receive certificates.

The applications, which are available from Main Street Beaufort, are due back by July 18. Contestants will be notified by July 25 if their dish has been challenged.

Information: Main Street Beaufort, USA, 101 West Street Extension, 843-525-6644, director@downtownbeaufort.com

Follow reporter Erin Moody at twitter.com/IPBG_Erin.

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