Battle of the Bakers

Battle of the Bakers

Culinary students bake-off in a cupcake war

If you walked through C-hallway the morning Wednesday, April 24, you might have noticed a delicious aroma take over. Step inside C102 and you would find students rushing to get their freshly iced cupcakes onto the display table

This was the Advanced Culinary Arts Baking and Pastry Class cupcake war competition in action, where six groups competed for the prize of a Starbucks gift card. Over a three-period in-school field trip, students brainstormed, planned and executed displays, and baked and decorated their cupcakes.

Seniors Athena Ferrentino, Abby Hargrove, Elizabeth Perez, and Maryam Arafa posing with their display.

The cupcakes were judged on their presentation, appearance, flavor, and creativity. Ultimately, the team of four with seniors Athena Ferrentino, Abby Hargrove, Elizabeth Perez, and Maryam Arafa won the competition with their Raspberry Swirl White Chocolate Cupcakes. 

“Nobody makes something similar…it’s all unique,” Ferentino said. The winning group whose design was inspired by a bouquet of flowers had to think outside of the box, cutting mini marshmallows in half and dipping the sticky part into sand sugar to create a jaw-dropping flower cupcake. “I definitely learned how to work with other people because I usually like to take control and do everything my way, but it was actually really fun working with them, and we all taught each other tips in a different way which was really helpful”. 

Boston Crème Doughnut inspired cupcakes

For senior Luke Gmiterek, the easiest part was dipping his Boston crème doughnut-inspired cupcake in the chocolate, while the hardest was brainstorming an original idea. “I learned that we could have fun in the kitchen.” 

S’mores inspired cupcakes

At the station right beside Gmiterek, senior Micheal Kim and his group who had chosen a campfire theme with a s’mores cupcake enjoyed making the final touches. Kim said, “Torching the cupcakes and putting the frosting on top was the most fun.” 

Lemonade Raspberry Cheesecake inspired cupcake

The competition presented an opportunity for senior Liana Farah to apply her personal experience from working in a bakery, especially when it came to decorating. Farah said, “I like how it brings each team closer to work as a team rather than just making something for an assignment.”

According to culinary teacher Rae Anne Pavlovic, the competitions are designed to help students learn time management and kitchen skills necessary in real-world experiences. However, Pavlovic also sees the competition as an opportunity for the students’ competitive spirit and creativity to shine: “The students really get engaged, and they like to compete against each other for bragging rights. They really get engaged because it’s their ideas,” Pavlovic said. 

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