February 29, 2016: Pâte à Choux at Bidwell Training Center

Our February meeting was held on Monday, February 29 at 7pm at Bidwell Training Center.  This time the category was Pâte à Choux. The items could be hot, cold, sweet, or savory.  There were 7 participants: Austin B. Dorn, Shelby Costo, Leslie Harvey, Mathew Fitzgerald, Judith Hall, Alex Dumnich, and Valencia Salter. The Judges were Keith Coughenour CEC, AAC Exec. Chef at the Duquesne Club; Bill Hunt, CEC, CCE, AAC Chef at UPMC; and William Racin Pastry Chef at The Duquesne Club. The items were judged on presentation, composition, harmony of ingredients, and portion size. The winner in 1st place was Mathew Fitzgerald of Bidwell Training Center. The 2nd place winner was Shelby Costo of the Art Institute, and 3rd place was Austin B. Dorn of the Fox Chapel Golf Club. While members and non-members were eligible to compete, only members were eligible to receive a knife for their prize. Mathew Fitzgerald and Austin B. Dorn are members and received 8” chef’s knife and paring knife respectively.  Congratulations to all who competed and thank you to the judges.

After the competition results were read, the meeting was turned to Chef Bello who headed up a round table discussion with all who wanted to participate. The aim of the round table discussion was to discuss how the ACFPC can grow and attract the millennial age group. We also addressed how we can bring new members into the organization while still satisfying the needs of our current members. A committee was formed for the purpose brainstorming new ideas for social networking. Finally, we took a moment to celebrate Chef Chene's 80th birthday.  Chef Chene has been a member of ACF Pittsburgh for most of his life and continues to be an active member and advocate for the organization.

First Place Winner Mathew Fitzgerald's Parisian Gnocci Soufflé. Mathew is a student at Bidwell Training Center

First Place Winner Mathew Fitzgerald's Parisian Gnocci Soufflé. Mathew is a student at Bidwell Training Center

Second Place winner Shelby Costo's Orange Bourbon Profiteroles. Shelby is in her final quarter at the Art Institute, Pittsburgh

Second Place winner Shelby Costo's Orange Bourbon Profiteroles. Shelby is in her final quarter at the Art Institute, Pittsburgh

Third Place Winner Austin Dorn's Duck a l'Orange. Austin works at Fox Chapel Golf Club.

Third Place Winner Austin Dorn's Duck a l'Orange. Austin works at Fox Chapel Golf Club.

Above images (L-R): Alex Dumnich (Bidwell) Lobster Roll Profiterole; Judith Hall (Bidwell) Taramasalata Profiterole appetizer; Leslie Harvey (Bidwell) Strawberry Mousse Cream Puff with Strawberry Preserves; Valicia Salter (Bidwell) Chocolat Pâte à Choux with cannoli filling.

Chefs Bill Hunt, Will Racin, and Keith Coughenour judged the entries

Chefs Bill Hunt, Will Racin, and Keith Coughenour judged the entries

First place winner Mathew Fitzgerald with Chef Chuck Baux

First place winner Mathew Fitzgerald with Chef Chuck Baux

Second place winner Shelby Costo with Chef Chuck Baux.

Second place winner Shelby Costo with Chef Chuck Baux.

Third place winner Austin Dorn with Chef Chuck Baux.

Third place winner Austin Dorn with Chef Chuck Baux.

Rikk Panzera and Chuck Baux with the full group of competitors.

Rikk Panzera and Chuck Baux with the full group of competitors.

After the competition results were read, the meeting was turned to Chef Bello who headed up a round table discussion with all who wanted to participate. The aim of the round table discussion was to discuss how the ACFPC can grow and attract the millennial age group. We also addressed how we can bring new members into the organization while still satisfying the needs of our current members. A committee was formed for the purpose brainstorming new ideas for social networking. Finally, we took a moment to celebrate Chef Chene's 80th birthday.  Chef Chene has been a member of ACF Pittsburgh for most of his life and continues to be an active member and advocate for the organization.

On March 4th, Chef Chene will be celebrating his 80th birthday. Chef Ruth Beatty made a cake to mark the occasion.

On March 4th, Chef Chene will be celebrating his 80th birthday. Chef Ruth Beatty made a cake to mark the occasion.