Friday, Mar 23, 2018
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Food contests and courses are on tap

Training employees in safe food handling is a high priority among members of the National Restaurant Association. The ServeSafe program is the industry standard. Among the local sessions available in the coming months:

  • Ohio State University Extension will hold Serve Safe Training for Employees (this is not the managers' course) from 2 to 4 p.m. Jan. 9, 16, and 23 in the Fulton County Administration Building at 152 South Fulton St. in Wauseon. Topics include personal hygiene, using thermometers and keeping logs, and cleaning and sanitizing.

    The class is open to any employee of food service operations in northwest Ohio. The cost is $30 per participant; $10 will be refunded upon successful completion of the six hours of training and passing the test. For questions and to register, call 419-337-9210.

  • Three levels of the Serving Safe Food for the Food Service Industry will be taught by Washington Local Schools Adult Education. The ServeSafe Master Level III covers all areas of food safety mandated by the Ohio Uniform Food Safety Code to meet food safety certification requirements for food service managers. The program, recognized by the National Restaurant Association, will be held Feb. 24 and 25 and March 18 and 19 held at Whitmer Career & Technology Center, 5719 Clegg Dr. in Toledo. Topics in the two-day seminar include hazards that threaten food, basics of a Hazard Analysis Critical Point food safety system, and maintaining sanitary facilities and equipment. Cost is $185 plus textbook and test fees.

    (Level I Basic is half day 2 or 4 hours for new food service employees at $25 or $50; Level II is one day for 8 hours and is an intermediate level course for those employees with expanded responsibility at $95.) To register for any of the Washington Local programs, call 419-473-8439 or 419-473-8334.


    With the memories of holiday foods still fresh on your taste buds, consider entering the Crisco Celebrates the Flavor of the Holidays Recipe Contest.

    Home chefs are invited to submit original recipes using at least one Crisco product in one of four categories: appetizer, main course, side dish, or dessert. One grand prize winner and four runners-up will be selected; winners will receive $5,000 and $1,000 respectively. Deadline for entry is Jan. 15. Visit and fill in the online entry form along with your original recipe. One entry per person.

    T-Fal's 2003 Perfect Baker Contest is open to non-professional baking enthusiasts, 18 years or old. Enter up to three original baking recipes in one of three baking categories: Cakes, Muffins/Quick Breads, and Cookies. Deadline for entries is April 25. Thirty finalists will be selected, 10 in each baking category. Of the 30 finalists, 10 top prize winners will be chosen in New York by a panel of food editors and baking professionals. Besides the grand prize of a seven-day trip for two to New York City, first, second, and third place winners will receive prizes of $1,000, $750, and $500 respectively, T-Fal cookware, bakeware, and small appliances. Official rules and entry forms may be obtained from the Perfect Baker Contest page at

    High school seniors are invited to compete for scholarships to Johnson & Wales University in its 14th National High School Recipe Contest. Graduating high school and secondary vocational students are eligible to submit original recipes for a healthful family dinner or a healthful plated dessert. Entries are due Jan. 17. For entry forms call the Culinary Admissions Office at 800-342-5598 ext. 2370. The top 10 entrants will be flown to Providence March 14-16 to prepare their dishes for a panel of judges.

    Olive Garden Italian Restaurant with Colavita USA is sponsoring the Culinary Institute of Tuscany online sweepstakes where four winners will receive a grand prize trip to Italy. Winners and their guests will visit Olive Garden's Culinary Institute of Tuscany March 22-29 to learn how to cook authentic Italian Cuisine with Chef Romana Neri. To enter, log on to by Jan. 26.


    The Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival celebrates its 17th anniversary March 26-30. The annual five-day fete in New Orleans, which includes non-stop activities for writers and readers, also has tasty offerings. The annual New Orleans Cooks and Books will feature a discussion on “comfort” food; a reprise of last year's sold-out wine-tasting Tennessee Sips comparing wines to characters in Williams plays, and a discussion on Italian and Southern Cooking with Auntie Pasto and Her Southern Kin. For information, contact the Festival office at 504-581-1144.

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