2 LLA students prepare for Jr. Iron Chef

In preparation for this year’s Junior Iron Chef competition, two students from Lynch Literacy Academy whipped up a complicated breakfast dish for their fellow students.

Seventh-grader Jerome Varon and eighth-grader Jose Torres will represent the Greater Amsterdam School District on Saturday, April 21 at Champlain Hall at SUNY Cobleskill. The competition is sponsored by SUNY Cobleskill, the Bassett Research Institute 5-2-1-0, NYS Creating Healthy Schools and Communities, and the Rural Health Education Network of Schoharie, Otsego, and Montgomery counties (RHENSOM).

Students will be competing against 13 other schools from Schoharie, Otsego, Delaware, Madison, Fulton, Herkimer, Oneida, Chenango, and Montgomery counties.

The dynamic duo practiced their culinary skills after school in Mrs. Theresa Featherstone’s Family and Consumer Science class. The students created a dish they call “Cheesy Eggs Florentine,” and all ingredients were healthy and included local foods from the Central NY region and USDA/Commodity items.

In order to compete, students were given the following recipe criteria:

  • The recipe name is appealing to youth;
  • The dish contains at least two local foods and at least two USDA/Commodity ingredients;
  • The dish has a low amount of calories, saturated fats, and sodium;
  • The dish can be served by cafeteria staff;
  • The dish can be eaten easily at a cafeteria table; and
  • The dish can be made for $1.75 per serving.

“These two boys worked so hard to make this dish come together in under 75 minutes,” Featherstone said. “Jerome had never even made a poached egg, yet he made 6 perfectly poached eggs in just 20 minutes! Jose made the creamed spinach and kale and the cheddar cheese sauce.”

Jerome Varon grade 7 (left) and Jose Torres grade 8 (right) are “The “Eggsperts” in the 2018 Junior Iron Chef Competition. Both boys are enjoying the delicious breakfast dish they prepared.

Cheesy Eggs Florentine piled high on top of a whole wheat baguette. Ingredients used are spinach, kale, onions, low-fat milk, reduced fat cheddar, heirloom tomato, poached egg and cornflakes for crunch.