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Thursday, April 9, 2009

Announcing Michigan Jr Iron Chef: RECIPES DUE MAY 8th

Greetings all,

I wanted to pass along news of this exciting event that incorporates
local foods! Please pass along this announcement to any that may be
interested in promoting and/or participating in the Michigan Junior Iron
Chef Competition!


Colleen Matts

Farm to School Specialist

CS Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems

Michigan State University

303 Natural Resources Building

East Lansing, MI 48824-1222


Please note that all current competition information is available in a
downloadable PDF document on the website, but check back to the website
often for more information and updates!


Dear Michigan High School Student, School Employee, or Community Member:

We are excited to invite high school students to join the first Michigan
Junior Iron Chef Competition! This competition gives students hands-on
cooking experience and teaches them about local foods and healthy food
choices. It starts with a recipe contest (entries due May 8th, 2009) and
ends with a cook-off competition on September 19th, 2009. Michigan
Junior Iron Chef is sponsored by the Michigan Nutrition Network –
Michigan State University Extension and the C.S. Mott Chair of
Sustainable Agriculture at Michigan State University.

Here's how it works:

Part 1. We challenge teams of 3-4 high school students to work with an
adult coach to make one tasty, healthy school lunch meal featuring
Michigan-grown and commodity foods. A list of these foods along with
rules for participating are available on the Michigan Junior Iron Chef
website listed below. Recipes should be easy and practical for school
food service to use and meet nutrition guidelines for school lunch. (See
rules on the website for more details.) To enter, teams submit an
application and recipe for their meal by May 8th, 2009. Recipes will be
judged by creativity, use of local foods, nutritional quality, and
practical use for school food service. Winning recipes will be shared
with schools throughout the state in a Michigan Junior Iron Chef
Cookbook. To participate, student teams must be from Michigan schools
which have at least 50% free and reduced-price meal participation. We
ask that teams that enter the recipe contest be made up of 9th-11th
graders so they may cook as a team at the competition in the fall of

Part 2: Teams that win the recipe contest will prepare and cook their
meals on-site at the Michigan Junior Iron Chef Competition on September
19th, 2009. Teams will also create a nutrition education and marketing
packet to present with their meals at the cook-off. Meals will be judged
by an expert panel on taste, presentation, creativity, use of local
foods, nutritional quality, and practical use for school food service.
Prizes will be awarded to three winning teams for Best in Show (best
overall), Best Use of Local Foods, and Best Nutrition Education and
Marketing Packet. Prizes for the first place team, Best in Show, will be
worth up to $150 per student team member and will include an award of
$500 to the food service program of the team's school! Reimbursements
for travel for one vehicle per team and up to $100 for ingredients for
practicing recipes will also be provided to teams that compete in the

The event will also include a cooking demonstration and a healthy lunch
along with tours of some of Michigan State University's farming and food
production facilities. Local farmers who provide ingredients for the
event will also be invited to attend.

Spread the word! Help us recruit creative student teams for this
exciting event! For more details and resources, go to our website at Thanks for your help in promoting healthy
eating habits and celebrating Michigan foods!


Michigan Junior Iron Chef Planning Team

Michigan Nutrition Network, MSU Extension

2100 Anthony Hall

East Lansing, MI 48824

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