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‘Iron Chef GU’ Cooks Up Some Culture

Posted on February 11, 2010 in: @Gonzaga, Events, Faculty & Staff, Faith, Feature Stories, Service, Students

By Tara Schmidt
Class of 2012

On a recent gray and otherwise dreary and drippy Sunday, the Unity Multicultural Education Center on Gonzaga’s campus hosted its first annual “Iron Chef GU: A Cultural Cooking Battle.” Thirteen cooks squared off before a panel of professional chefs and the voting public jointly decided the flavor they favored.

Thirteen cooks squared off before a panel of professional chefs and the voting public decided the flavor they favored.

Thirteen cooks squared off before a panel of professional chefs and the voting public who jointly decided the flavor they favored. Photo by Tara Schmidt.

The People’s Favorite was Michael Dirkson, who received $75 in gift certificates to area restaurants. His dish, “Hawaiian Chicken Sandwich,” will be featured in the COG sometime this semester. The Chefs’ Favorite was Denise Flores, who received $100 cash for her “Desayuno Salvadoreno – Desayuno del Pobre,” which translated means (roughly) “Salvadoran Breakfast,” from El Salvador.

The Gonzaga community members cooked dishes from eight different countries and cultures for the competition, which took place on the main floor of the Crosby Student Center. The most common nation of origin was the United States, but recipes were entered and shared from El Salvador, Japan, Kenya, Russia, the Philippines, Germany and Mexico.

Tracy Ellis-Ward, UMEC director, hopes this event tops itself each year. “Next year we want it to be bigger and better,” Ellis-Ward said.

Whitney Urritia of UMEC said, “It was a great opportunity for the Gonzaga community to share and learn about the many different cultures here and also a chance for the participants to show off a bit of their cooking talent!”

Following is a list of the GU community members and their dishes for the event.

Megan Oshiro Chi Chi Dango Japan
Sage Stargrove Quick-as-can-be Coconut Crème Cheesecake United States
Angeline Nguyen Eggrolls Philippines
Sr. Leonida Nasimiyu Wasfula Ugali served with Sokumawiki Kenya
Michael Ryall Cajun Shrimp Etoufee United States
Denise Flores Desayuno Salvadoreno/Desayuno del Pobre
Salvadoran Breakfast
El Salvador
Bob Wong Chicken Gone Wild United States
Laura Fabiola Watts Cream Cheese Appetizer/Pastel Azteca/Aptelkuchle Mexico and Germany
Dane Pavlik Laguna Beach Balls United States
Jonathan Mora Ceviche Latin American
Brandon Yost Pork Osso Buco with Rice Pilaf
Andrew Lawson Beef Stroganoff Russia
Michael Dirkson Hawaiian Chicken Sandwich United States

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