Oak Grove hosts junior chef competition

Oak Grove hosts junior chef competition

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Oak Grove High School's culinary program is hosting a 2-day competition for regional high school culinary teams. 

The friendly competition is called Junior Chef: "Favor the Flavor of Mississippi." The teams have an hour and 30 minutes to complete the recipe that they have created, and they will be judged on presentation, quality, preparation and taste.

The recipes must include Mississippi products, along with a spice blend that is produced and used in all of the cafeterias in Mississippi.

Six teams are competing in this week's competition, including Hattiesburg High School, Rankin County, Wayne County, Lamar County and high school students from two divisions of Hinds Community College. Three teams competed today and three teams will compete tomorrow.

"Tomorrow they are on their own," said Oak Grove High School culinary instructor, Debbie Miller. "We have practiced, they know what they are doing, they are confident in the skills that they have practiced, and I have encourage them to do their best and communicate and work as a team."

The entree winner of the competition will go on the menu of lunchrooms across the state for the next school year.

"It's just so fun to see them in there," said Lamar County Superintendent Tess Smith. "They are dropping their chicken, sautéing, moving around working as a team. On the menu for Oak Grove High School is jerk chicken tacos, they actually cooked for the school board a couple of months ago, so I am very excited because I know they have got this recipe down pat."