Chefs briefing participants about the final challenge in the Culinary competition. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

The World Halal Culinary Championship 2019 concluded with intensity and heat as finalists worked hard to prepare their final dishes to impress a panel of celebrity chef judges.

Fueled with passion and perseverance, four teams came up with one of a kind dishes using surprise ingredients in just under two hours during the “Black Box” challenge.

The skilled chefs consisted of participants from the Indonesian Chef Association (ICA) Team B, Institute of Brunei Technical Education (IBTE) Team 1, Radisson Hotel and Rizqun International Hotel.

Team Radisson posing for a picture with their medals and prizes. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

Coming in first was Radisson Hotel with their winning dishes; Lobster and Scallop, Tenderloin and Prawn and Asian Exotic Cheesecake, scoring 84.9 points and took home a cash prize of $2000. They also won Best Appetizer and Best Main Dish.

Meanwhile, second place went to chefs from Rizqun International Hotel followed by Team 1 of Institute of Brunei Technical Education (IBTE) with scores 80 and 78.7 points, respectively.

Senior Sous Chef of Radisson Hotel Achmad Sandi Jauhari saw the win at the inaugural halal cooking competition as a big achievement for his team.

The main dish prepared by the chefs from Radisson Hotel – Tenderloin and Prawn with Kolo Mee Aglio Olio. Image: Rafidah Hamit.

“As we needed to create new dishes on the spot along with surprise ingredients, my excellent team and I were determined to work together to produce the best dishes for the judges.”

“We’re very happy with the outcome and made sure to use everything provided. As chefs we need to be like magicians; we need to be smart, act fast and invent dishes that will not only stand out but win us the championship,” said Achmad.

The team, he added, did not have any time to practice prior to the competition due to their busy schedules but they made sure to give their best on the real day.

The winning appetizer Lobster and Scallop with Crispy Potato prepared by chefs of Radisson Hotel. Image: Rafidah Hamit

For Achmad, the event was a good platform for both veteran and junior chefs to explore new skills as they can learn from one another to gain new knowledge and sharpen their skills.

On his part, Head of School, School of Hospitality & Tourism of IBTE Sultan Saiful Rijal Campus Mohamad Kamarul Izzudin Hj Kamaluddin said that the competition served as an eye-opener for the student participants.

“I am very proud of them. It was good exposure for the students and I hope they were able to gain knowledge from the competition. It was also a great experience for our instructors who acted as judges as we are preparing for the ASEAN Skill Competition next year,” he said.

Head of School, School of Hospitality & Tourism of IBTE Sultan Saiful Rijal Campus Mohd Kamarul Izzudin Haji Kamaluddin speaking to The Bruneian. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

Moreover, the guest judge Ricky Chan who is a celebrity chef from Malaysia said that it was important for the seasoned and junior chefs to learn from each other.

“This platform itself is a good start and we would give feedback after every round to help participants improve (their skills) for the future,” he said, adding that the other professional chefs were also learning and sharing knowledge with one another.

Chefs briefing participants about the final challenge in the Culinary competition. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

Chan further said the judges were impressed with all the dishes as everyone was able to deliver well despite a non-conventional cooking environment.

Other associations that took part in the competition were participants from Wafa Hotel and regional chefs from the Indonesian Chef Association (ICA), Rasa Sayang Sabah, SMIP ICB Bandung, Ming Garden Hotel Sabah and D’Rosemary.

Throughout the competition, participants were required to prepare a three-course meal that was judged based on presentation, cooking skills, hygiene and taste.

The event was held in tandem with the BIMP EAGA Tertiary Industry Forum Showcase where vendors from BIMP EAGA countries namely Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines were invited to showcase and promote their products.

Participants selecting ingredients to be used for their final match. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak
Participants posing for a picture with judges and organisers. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

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