View Full Version : "Dessert" Competetions--my thoughts

03-07-2005, 06:19 PM
We did the "Dessert Competetion" at Mobile.
First time ever.
Background info is here:
Post subject: Decadent Desert-Raspberry Tiramisu Posted: Feb 06, 2005 - 09:39 AM

I prepped the Terisimu following Karen's instructions (almost) exactly.
One minor Boo-Boo. :lol: No harm, no foul, no problem.

We go to turn it in. The entries in the line looked like the chefs at the Food Network prepared them :twisted:
Wish I had my camera, but I never saw so much fine china and inspiration in the presentations! Flowers, Ribbons, Linen Napkins, and innovation to die for!
Immediate Cold Feet Mod :oops:
I even called Karen ASAP in Orlando and told her not to spend her winnings. She was in Target at the time :lol:

We actually wound up 19th out of 38 entries.
The normal Southern Brethren DAM (Dead Ass Middle) score :lol: :lol:
I am proud to even be DAM in that field.
When I went to pick up the bowl and spoon, many of the entries were a third to half eaten. Ours was GONE! Felt good!

Mobile was a major meet with many "full time Pro" teams. It would not surprise me if some of them had a "Dessert Chef" on retainer :cry:
I am sure a local event would not be so "Chi-Chi".

So, if you want to do "Desserts" some day:
1. I would go to one first and look at the "turn in line". See how demanding it is in your area. If you don't get a chance to look ahead of time--just "go for it" if you want.
2. Be sure you have a dessert that is easy (real easy) to prep on site. We were fortunate to have lots of time on Friday to fuss with this and then slap it in the RV Frig till Saturday.
3. Don't be afraid to "be bold" with flavors. We were concerned that the distinctive and bold flavors would be a turn-off to some. Apparently not so!
4. Kevin and Clara (HomeBBQ) are consistant winners in this catagory. Sir Jim Minion gave me some pointers to get ready. I am sure if you have questions--the answers will "POP UP" if you ask.

Lots of fun--but not the Core of competetion. Glad we did it, but a long time till we try again :oops:


03-07-2005, 06:53 PM
I have judged the dessert catagory twice at the Minnesota in May contest and I have to admit that I would have a tough time competeing against most of the entries. I had one last year that did a coconut creme brule and served it right in the coconut halfs with little drink umbrellas and real flowers on the side.

03-09-2005, 08:01 PM
I recieved a couple of interesting PM's about this.
Let me clarify.
I am not trying to, and am not meaning to discourage anyone from trying the Dessert Competetion :roll:
My message is--there are folks who take this real serious, at least they did at Mobile.
We were not disappointed in our results, at all.
It is just like trying to compete and expecting to take a Grand or Reserve Title at the beginning :cry:
Even a really, really, really good entry may not win in a field of Pros :lol:
But, it is fun and don't be detered if you want to try.


06-26-2005, 03:58 PM
Has anyone looked at the desserts turned in at Shannon, IL in the past? I found some pics online of last years turn-ins and they were all pies of some sort, and, frankly, not very impressive. I volunteered to do the dessert with Greg this year, and I'm tossing between a coupl eof ideas...The Bacon Brittle posted by Brooklyn is great, and may be unique enough to catches the judgegs attention, but it doesn't hav emuch wow factor. I found a recipe for bourbon and honey planked peaches that would be easy to prep on site, and I also found a recipe for a habanero-lime cheesecake that would certainly turn some heads.

Thoughts? Suggestions?

06-26-2005, 05:55 PM

Looks great and DAM is a good place to be.


06-26-2005, 06:03 PM
The only things I would add to my previous thoughts are:
SWEET seemed to dominate most of the entries at Mobile.
FWIW--may vary by region.
I do not know if the Brittle will be well received by all the judges. Most brittle I have tasted (and I love it) is hard on the teeth :twisted:
It might work as a decor item--maybe a circle of it around some other "main item" for looks and variety in the presentation :lol:
Just thinking out loud!

Go for it--and good luck :lol:

06-26-2005, 06:21 PM
Ron, I will give you my mom's carrot cake recipe. She has won a few ribbons with it.

06-26-2005, 09:37 PM
I LOVE carrot cake... If tis OK with mom, I'll give it a shot. PM or email or post it, whatever's easiest for you...

As far as the brittle, I posted some pics in the Pig Candy thread. I really came out great, but it all shades of brown, so not my eye appeal. I though about a pig-shaped plate with some edible flowers as acccents, but its still brown...

07-05-2005, 09:29 PM
I promised RonL this recipe a long time ago, but couldn't find the cookbook. This is an incredible cake. Rich, moist, excellent. Everytime my wife makes it, people rave about it and want the recipe.

Makes about 16 servings

8 eggs
6 oz (6 squares semisweet baking chocolate)
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanillla
1 cup cake flour sifted
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup apricot preserves, heated and mashed with fork (Sometimes she uses cherry or orange)

Preheat oven to 275. Line bottom of 9" springfoam pan with greased wax paper.

Seperate 7 of the eggs; leave 1 egg whole; set aside.

In double boiler, melt chocolate; let cool slightly.

Using medium speed on mixer, cream butter. Gradually add 1/2 cup of the sugar. and continue creaming until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla, then chocolate.

Beat in egg yolks, one at a time, then beat in the whole egg.
Using low speed, mix in the flour.

Ina seperate bowl, using high speed with clean beaters, whip egg whites until frothy. Add cream of tartar and continue beating until soft peaks form when beater is slowly raised. Gradually add remaining sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form.

Fold into chocolate mixture.

Pour into prepared pan. Bake about 1-1/3 hours until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool slightly. Remove sides of pan. Let cool competely.

Halve cake horizontally. Spread preserves evenly on bottom half of torte. Top with remaining half. Frost with european chocolate icing.

2oz (2 squares) semisweet baking chocolate
2oz (2 squares) un-sweeted baking chocolate
1-1/3 cups confectioners' sugar sifted
3 tablespoons whipping cream (Approximetely)

To make icing, melt chocolate in double bolier. Beat in sugar and cream alternately until smooth and of spreading consistency.

Trust me - this is damn good!

07-05-2005, 10:06 PM
And, I found this on the web...

Sachertorte is a timeless composition of the most important and finest ingredients from the confectioner's kitchen with no additives: pure chocolate, butter, eggs, sugar, flour, and apricot jam. What makes them into a Sachertorte is the quality of the individual ingredients and the way they harmonize perfectly with each other. Anything else is just an ordinary chocolate torte with ordinary chocolate icing and often looks nothing like the real thing. It is important to remember that, above all, the Sachertorte must be served correctly. It must be served fresh with freshly beaten, lightly sweetened cream, which the Austrians call "Schlagobers." Without this cool, smooth, elegant finishing touch, the pleasure is incomplete. It would be a sin, a crime even, if the waiter did not recommend it. The sweet velvety coating is a cooked chocolate icing.

07-05-2005, 10:13 PM
Sounds great, Robert! Thanks! I don't know if I'll have time to try it out before the weekend, but I'll let you know when I do.

Here's some pics of the two desserts I tried this weekend. The first is a Habanero-Lime Cheesecake, which received rave reviews. Everyone, including my father, who does not like "spicy" foods. The other, Grilled Pound Cake with Pineapple Salsa and Tequila Whipped Cream was also great, but was not as well received.

07-06-2005, 03:03 PM
Robert I'm going to make your recipe for sachertorte this weekend. It sounds great.