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CCAC Culinary students participate in Olympic Culinary Preview Party held at WCCC

PITTSBURGH—CCAC Culinary Arts students along with Associate Professor and Culinary Arts Program Coordinator Arthur Inzinga attended a preview party for members of the American Culinary Federation Culinary Team USA at Westmoreland County Community College last month. At the party, hosted by the American Culinary Federation Laurel Highlands Chapter, Team USA previewed the exquisite table display that they will present when competing in the 2020 International Culinary Olympics Feb. 14–19 in Stuttgart, Germany.

At the event, CCAC students participated in a seminar put on by Team USA for regional culinary students, in which they were able to ask questions of the chefs. The students also presented their own gourmet creations to guests as part of a fundraiser for the team. Four CCAC Culinary Arts students, under the direction of Inzinga, prepared and served turkey mousseline spiraled with wilted spinach and served atop maple-scented butternut squash silk, accompanied by wild rice and dried fruit salad, cranberry chutney and a cornmeal crisp.

“I thought it was such a great opportunity for our students to interact with chefs who are going to represent our country at the international competition and to get an idea of the highest levels of cuisine,” said Inzinga. “It was really a great experience.” 

In addition, the students met with their peers from WCCC and several other schools at the preview party, which was the final practice session for the regional (Midwest) team before they head to the competition. A national team will also participate in the competition, held every four years in Germany. Unlike the athletic Olympics, teams at the International Culinary Olympics are competing against a standard, not a competitor.

Meeting with the chefs, who got their start in the field just as the students are doing, helps the students to realize what they may be able to achieve in their careers, remarked Inzinga. Past members of Team USA include CCAC alumnus and Certified Master Chef Russell Scott, who serves as Culinary Director for The Club at Carlton Woods in The Woodlands, Texas, and who graduated from the CCAC Culinary Arts program in 1985. In fact, 12 chefs from the Pittsburgh area have competed as members of Team USA over the years.

To learn more about CCAC’s Culinary Arts program, contact Associate Professor Art Inzinga at ainzinga@ccac.edu.

CCAC Culinary Arts students

Pausing for a photo with Raimond Hoffmeister, Certified Master Chef and Team USA regional team coach and manager, are CCAC Culinary Arts students (from the left): Courtney Helms, Travis Galish, Jessica Martinez and Anna Tarbert.
Pausing for a photo with Raimond Hoffmeister, Certified Master Chef and Team USA regional team coach and manager, are CCAC Culinary Arts students (from the left): Courtney Helms, Travis Galish, Jessica Martinez and Anna Tarbert.

 

Turkey Mousseline

Turkey mousseline dish prepared by CCAC Culinary Arts students for the Olympic Culinary Preview party.

Turkey mousseline dish prepared by CCAC Culinary Arts students for the Olympic Culinary Preview party.