Taylor’s Culinology® students’ ‘Plantain Pastelon’ won the judges’ palate in the Savoury Category of the 2017 Research Chefs Association Competition
Taylor’s students stand tall and proud, as second-time champions of the 2017 Research Chefs Association Competition in Puerto Rico, U.S.A
Taylor’s University School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts (TCHT) continued their success, as champions of the Savoury category at the Research Chefs Association (RCA) Competition. This is a second time victory for the local institution at the prestigious international competition, held in San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States of America.
The Taylor’s student team called Team Plus Ultra, a band of four final year students in the Bachelor of Science (Hons.) Culinology® with team lead, Bertrand Barrett Tan, Jereby Poh Mun Xuen, Abdul Hannan bin Zulkarnain, Muhammad Ramzali bin Mohammed Akhiar were trained by Dr. Wendy Lim Pek Kui, Senior Lecturer, Taylor’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts.
“We were the defending champions and have retained our overall title,” beamed Professor Dr. Pradeep Nair, Deputy Vice Chancellor, Taylor’s University. “Our Culinology® programme is the only one in the world outside North America and we are so happy for our students and lecturers, whom competed and won against top universities in the U.S. and Canada.”
“Culinology®, which combines culinary arts, food science and food technology, is one of the most promising and fastest growing sectors in the food industry,” he continued.
The team’s winning entry, “Plantain Pastelon – with turkey picadillo and spicy mango sauce” is inspired by the rich history of Puerto Rican cuisine, reimagined as a frozen entrée while retaining its flavours of tradition. The accompanying mango sauce brought all the flavours together and being naturally gluten free, appeals to the masses with minimal concerns. Its attractive price point at USD$2.50 makes the nutritious meal hard to resist.
On top of the prizes granted that night, RCA presented its President’s Award to Dr. Neethiahnanthan Ari Ragavan, Dean, School of Hospitality, Tourism & Culinary Arts, Taylor’s University. The award recognised Dr. Neethia’s impactful contribution to the association and industry, for his tireless support in the mission of Culinology®.
This year, RCA introduced a new category in Pastry where the Taylor’s Team Cuatro took second place. In the Savory category, Team BAM took an additional spot in third place. Taylor’s University remains the only higher education institution in Asia to be named champions at RCA. Each team had to develop a proposal for a concept which included both a 'gold-standard' recipe (restaurant quality version) and also the corresponding commercial product with manufacturing details. The top four finalist teams then competed on-site, creating a fresh 'gold-standard' version of their products which had to match-up against the proposed commercialised and processed version. The winners of the competition were announced at the RCA Annual Conference Awards Reception, held in Puerto Rico this year.