This Tuesday, the five regional finalists of our Canadian culinary student contest competed for the national grand prize – the Pear Excellence title and $5,000. The kitchen heated up as the finalists chopped, sautéed, peeled, roasted, and battered USA Pears and other ingredients to present their dishes before a panel of 8 esteemed culinary judges.
The judges praised all the contestants, calling Melissa Drutz’s Pear and Potato Nests “innovative” and Amy Bonchuk’s Sauteed Amaretto Pears with Cheddar Bothwell Cookies “outside the box” and a great cheese pairing.
In the end, the judges named Martha MacDonald the grand prize winner for her Savory Pear Appetizer plate, which included pear cranberry fennel coulis and pork, local blue cheese, and fried sage leaves in a roasted Green Anjou pear.
Greg MacIver of LaSalle College won the People’s Choice award for his Pear Crab Salad with Crab Mayo and Tempura Cambozola Pears.
View a list of all finalists—and the winning recipes—here.