In my previous post about my trip to the Rachael Ray show I shared my experience and excitement of the first of 2 days as a guest on The Rachael Ray show. I left off concluding the first part of the competition. The next and final part of the competition continued early the next day. We started out in hair and makeup with some fantastic ladies that are great at what they do. Of course there was a lot of waiting, and we actually walked into the building right behind our new best friend Chef Jacques Pépin, he noticed us first and called us over to greet us. When it was finally time to proceed, during a break, we walked out in front of the live studio audience, can you say “nervous”, because thats what I was, I mean sweating nervous. We were quickly introduced to Rachael and at this point we already knew what the challenge was so we quickly walked thru the kitchens we were to be working in. The final challenge was to repeat yesterday’s challenge and include the suggestions Chef Pépin had for us the day prior, in front of this studio audience…OMG!!. I chose to pair down my food, and focus on the white meat only, and add a sauce to my mushrooms that I didn’t over cook this time around, using white wine and butter (nod to Julia Childs). I had just enough time to taste the sauce and realize it was too salty, and correct it at the last 30 seconds before I plated. Overall I was proud of my dish, Rachael Ray even complimented me on my plating. The play by play can be seen on my youtube channel (youtube.com/foodieengineer).
In the end I didn’t take home the big win, but I won so much along the way. The experience of a life time to meet the world famous, Chef Jacques Pépin, the exposure of a great show that is watched by many, and most of all the opportunity to realize my passion and purpose on this journey. Plus, I fell in love with the idea of culinary school. When I tell you I sleep better knowing, I know the goal, and all I have to do is execute the plan to get there. This experience has only ignited the fire that began as a spark with me in the kitchen just having a great time. I guess I should tell you what I didn’t win. The winner of the competition received a 5 day culinary vacation to Cancun for 2, and full tuition to The International Culinary Center’s Culinary Arts Program. However, for being top 3, we all received a ton of Rachael Ray Cookware. Now, I am working on menus to begin sharing my food with more people so that I can build my skills and get ready for culinary school. My plan after completing culinary school is to begin my own high end catering business, though it will take some time, I am willing to put in the effort to reach my goal, and truly live in my purpose. In an upcoming post I will share all of the goodies that Rachael Ray gave us to take home and cook with.