‘Iron Chef’ sizzles at Eastway

Cody Francis

Oysters were the secret ingredient

The lower lounge of Eastway where students usually study did not have notebooks and textbooks, but rather grills, knives and vegetables last night as Dining Services and Kent Interhall Council hosted “Iron Chef.”

The competition pitted three student teams and one Residence Services team against each other in a cooking competition similar to the TV show. Each team had to make three dishes using three main ingredients – zucchini, spinach and shallots – as well as one secret ingredient announced right before the competition began. Laughter and shouting filled the room as head chef John Goehler announced the ingredient, smoked oysters, to the four teams. It had to be added to only one dish, and only one oyster had to be used.

“I chose oysters because I knew it would freak everyone out,” Goehler said. “It’s really not that bad.”

The students were not as freaked out as the judges when it came to the secret ingredient.

“I got very nervous when he said we would be eating oysters,” Della Marie Marshall, associate director of the Center for Student Involvement, said. “I have never really been a fan.”

Other judges included Brenda Richardson, senior secretary for the Center of Student Involvement and Gina Spencer, a graduate assistant in the Student Multicultural Center. Teams were judged based on six categories: appearance, originality, use of secret ingredients, use of mandatory ingredients, quality of taste and extra courses.

Most teams had at least one person who said they cook on a regular basis. Nobody said that gave them an advantage because of the ingredients.

“There really are a limited number of dishes we can make with these ingredients,” Lisa Oddeo, a member of “The Delicious Divas,” said as she chopped zucchini.

Oddeo’s team cooked up a trio of zucchini courses, including zucchini muffins, zucchini fritata and zucchini soup, a recipe they made up themselves.

“Oh wow, it’s actually good,” Marissa Adkins, Delicious Diva team member, said as she sampled her original zucchini soup.

Some were not as happy when they tasted the courses. Marshall puked when sampling a serving of soup prepared by another team, the “Golden Flashgals.”

“That one did not catch my eye from the beginning,” Marshall said. ” I felt like I should try it anyway, but something about it triggered my gag reflex. It was nothing personal.”

Despite the soup malfunction, the Flashgals finished in second place behind the Residence Services team “The Cutting Crew.”

The Cutting Crew consisted of T.J. Logan, senior assistant director of Residence Services; Allison Smith, business manager for Residence Services; Sameer Jaleel, senior application director for Residence Services; and Dave Taylor, marketing and assignments coordinator for Residence Services.

The Cutting Crew’s first place finish was a surprise to its members, because the Residence Services team finished in last place last year.

“We didn’t think we would win after last year’s finish, but it was fun and I’m glad we did it,” Taylor said.

Contact room and board reporter Cody Francis at [email protected].