The stakes and nerves were high as MCIE launched its Inaugural Culinary Challenge. With 5 teams of 3, Certificate III Commercial Cookery students were invited to join the challenge and were responsible for choosing their team members, designing a three-course menu, and submitting it for review prior to participating in the competition.


The grand event kicked off on Wednesday December 13th at our dedicated training kitchen where culinary skills and creativity were put to the ultimate test. With a 3.5 hour deadline, each team presented a 3-course meal to our world-renowned judges and inspirational business owners – Chef Anthony Caprioli (University Cafe), Chef Martin Probst (PROfound Coaching) and Chef Peter Wright (Global Hospitality Group). As the flames arose and the countdown began, competitors gave it their all as the judges roamed watching and scoring on details such as teamwork, culinary skills, communication, and presentation. 


During the cook-off, students displayed leadership, teamwork and strong culinary skills that impressed the judges even if some students were only halfway through their course. Each team presented their dishes to the judges and were asked to explain their inspiration for the menu and why they joined the challenge.


Once the scoring was completed, each team displayed their dishes to the public and answered questions from the audience. After much anticipation, it finally came time to announce the 2017 Culinary Challenge winner! Although all teams performed above expectations, in the end, it came down to skill and persistence that resulted in team C leader Anak Narksavee leading her team members Yu Fan Wu and Darunrat Pamonbuth to victory. Despite encountering a major setback with their beetroot buns, the team remained poised and overcome all obstacles in their path with judges commenting their menu was well-balanced, presented with precision and full of flavor. 


The judges provided feedback to all students and were impressed by the professionalism they observed in the kitchen. Feedback from students regarding the experience was that it was the most exciting though nerve-wrecking experience but they were above the moon to be provided this opportunity to showcase their skills and win a few end of year prizes as well. Well done to all the participants, a big thank you to the planning committee, our exceptional judges for taking time to inspire our students and a big congratulations to our winning team! We look forward to next year and don’t forget to check out the highlights video on our Facebook page!


What will you be cooking for the next Culinary Challenge?

With special thanks to:

Judges: Chef Anthony Caprioli (University Cafe), Chef Martin Probst (PROfound Coaching) &  Chef Peter Wright (Global Hospitality Group)

Hospitality department and participants

Congratulations Team C!   Team Leader: Anak Narksavee   Team Members: Yu Fan Wu & Darunrat Pamonbuth

Team C menu:

Prawn Ravioli with lemongrass broth

Spicy herbed chicken patty with beetroot bun and coriander mayonnaise

Pineapple and apple crumble

Melbourne City Institute of Education (MCIE) is a vibrant and innovative registered training organisation, which offers a range of courses in Melbourne to help students to fulfil their career goals.

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