-By Marinagrazia Bisogno-
A good way to end a day of study and work is definitely indulging in a little sweetness, and the 1st edition of the Dessert competition organized by MIT Spouses & Partners Connect and MIT Postdoctoral Association has definitely been this way! A triumph of sweetness that saw 17 competitors including students, post docs and S&P members challenged to death in aprons for the title of best dessert. The beautiful idea came through a collaboration between the two MIT associations and was realized with the precious help of many volunteers coordinated by Maria Carsi, Miyuki Ota (S&P), and Min Ding (PDA) who arranged all the details required to build up this fun and delicious contest! A great success also for the audience, who appreciated the “sweet" invitation and participated in large numbers, thereby contributing to the success of the evening. All those present had fun in tasting the desserts and voting for their favorite! The Grand prize and runner-up winners were chosen by the judges. Also the contestants could choose their favorite, while the audience selected the winner for the Best Looking Dessert.
The challengers had the opportunity to make room for their creativity by taking the role of chef on this occasion, and the result was amazing! A real delight to the eyes and to the palate! Chocolate, cream, fruits, cheese, a lot of flavor for several desserts coming from different parts of the world, each with its own recipe and secrets. In addition to being an occasion to taste real goodness, this event was a pleasant chance to meet and share different "culinary" cultures. Attendees enjoyed a lot of local sweets from the delicious buffet offered to the presents, where, among various other treats, a majestic chocolate fountain stood!
Partner of the evening The Cambridge School of Culinary Art sponsored the prize for the Best Looking Dessert, and also organized a live presentation with the Italian chef Simone Montali, who showed how to prepare a delicious ice cream.
All sweet teeth like me are definitely looking forward to the next edition with cries of:” Yes, we cake!” … After all, is there a love sincerer than that for desserts??!!
THE COMPETITORS AND THEIR DESSERTS
All the competitors showed great skill and imagination in the creation of a wide variety of desserts: Sera Thornton (Lemon Meringue Pie), Raghad Rafia (Carrot cake), Michel Nasilowski (Millefeuille aux framboises), Natasha Arora & Igor Minevich (Milk burfi), Lisanne Stoop (Mini Dutch Apple Pie), Giorgio Triulzi & Jennifer Taborda (Crostata alla Nutella e frutti rossi), Wenjing Fang & Yi Song (Jello flower), Marissa Stephens (Bailey's chocolate trifle), Ursula Schersch (Vanillekipferl), David Krejc (Mozart slices), Raji Jetti (Double Ka Meetha), Hanis Hashim (Sago Gula Melaka), Munirah Mahyudin (Pavlova), Nada Alamro (Kunafa with cream) , Jean Chow & Thain Syed (Dark Chocolate Raspberry Bites), Casey Wong (Mini Chocolate Cheesecake with a Caramel), Fiona Paine & Christine Wicker (Flourless Chocolate Cake).
The three judges who chose the winners after a careful tasting were professionals and members of the organizing associations, together with two lucky judges picked from the audience: Tian Elsa (S&P), Sahar Tavakoli (PDA), Davide Tassi (Professional Chef), Matt Webb and Yi-Fei Leng (Audience).
THE WINNERS AND THE PRIZES
Number one was Jean Chow & Tahin Syed with the Dark Chocolate Raspberry Bites who won a $100 Amazon Gift Card, and the runner-up was Michel Nasilowski with his Millefeuille aux framboises who won a $75 Amazon Gift Card. The Contestants’ Favorite prize went to Nada Alamro (Kunafa with cream) who won a $50 Gift Card for Flour Bakery, and Best Looking Dessert was awarded to, Wenjing Fang & Yi Song (Jello flower) who won a cookbook and a free recreational class at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts.