Big Bites

Oak Park’s ProStart Culinary team competes

Jessica Begley

Oak Park’s ProStart culinary team participated in a competition called “Missouri ProStart invitational” in Springfield, Missouri at the Ramada Oasis Hotel and Convention Center February 15-16th. This was many of the competitors first year on the team and they cooked American lamb.

“We had to come up with the menu and we had to use ingredients that were in season and we had narrowed our choice of meat to lamb or a fish,” senior Mykayla Hope Smith said.


They used veal for practice, which they do almost every Wednesday after school.


“It’s similar to Lamb and Lamb is fairly expensive but we used lamb to practice a few times,” Smith said.


The team felt fairly comfortable using lamb since one of them had cooked it before.


“I am very familiar with lamb, so for me it was just like cooking any other meat,” junior Ola Thabbit said.


The team chose the recipe they made themselves.


“We cooked it to a medium rare and Ola choose to put a Mediterranean spice called Ras El Hanout on it along with salt and pepper. We made a vegetable medley, Saffron risotto, and an apricot Chutney sauce,” Smith said.


“It [the competition] was fun and stressful. At the hotel, we had a lot of fun,” senior Atlantis Wilkins said.


They got 10th place out of the 20 teams who competed.