Calling all Iron Chefs

Four teams of four chefs will compete in the 3rd Annual Pennsylvania Iron Chef Competition in February at Hershey Lodge. Last year’s competition at the Hilton Harrisburg brought out the best in Exec Chef Mark Pawloski of the Yorktowne Hotel in York, who successfully defended his 2007 title.

Working with chefs David Stoltzfus of The Inn at Penn, James Batterson from the Sheraton Harrisburg – Hershey, and Michael Geary of the Holiday Inn Conference Center in Allentown, Chef Pawloski had two hours to do three courses with wine pairings.  While standard ingredients go out weeks ahead of the competition, only on the day did they learn what proteins they’d have.

The Pawloski team’s starter was a Pan-Seared Medallion of Salmon with a Roasted Sweet Corn Flan and a Carrot Ginger Nage. For the main plat, they did Stuffed Tenderloin of Beef with Goat Cheese, Roasted Bell Peppers, and Sweet Corn. Dessert came in three variations of a Honey-Sweet Corn-Saffron Ice Cream: Caramel-Glazed with a Tuille Spoon, stuffed in an Almond-Crisped Orange and Ginger Profiterole, and as a Black-Pepper Cannelloni.

This year’s competition, sponsored by the PA Tourism & Lodging Association, will be February 17 at noon during the “Sweet Success in Food & Beverage” Conference. Nine plates of each course will be prepared, one for the central viewing area and eight for the panel of judges.

The deadline for applications — letter of interest and resume — is December 12. Email to gpha@patourism.org or fax to (717) 232-8948. Chefs selected to participate will be notified by December 19.

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