A trio of Bastyr students took home the top prize at the fourth annual Bastyr Top Chef competition on April 19, 2014. Brandon Testa, Paul Despres and Mason Wallace, working together as “Team Brossica Brothers,” created a winning dish of Fresh Broccoli and Tofu Spring Rolls with Broccoli-Cashew-Lemon-Nettle Sauce.
More than 100 fans and supporters waited in the Bastyr Dining Commons as seven teams of students and staff prepped, cooked and plated dishes in the University's nutrition kitchen. This year, they were tasked with featuring a vegetable and a protein in their dishes, all acquired from local farms and markets. To make the competition more challenging, teams had to work without the help of any technology, instead relying on cookbooks, faculty consultation and their own gut instincts and taste buds.
According to Testa, Team Brossica Brothers made their winning meal using an "intuitive" cooking style and did not follow an exact recipe, which might make sense since they are all naturopathic medicine students and not nutrition students. Still, they were very happy with their results. “It was such a thrill to have the opportunity to cook with such talented people and then share our meals with everyone in the dining commons. It turned out pretty awesome,” he says.
Clearly, others felt the same way as the team bested the six other groups to stake their claim as Bastyr’s 2014 Top Chef.
“This event was our best one yet! We sold 104 tickets prior to the event, and reached capacity during ticket sales that night,” said Bastyr student and event organizer Liz Potter. “The event was entertaining, organized, and helped to strengthen Bastyr University's support of the community.”
All of the record-breaking proceeds from the sold-out event will benefit Teen Feed, an organization that serves Seattle's homeless youth, with help from the Bastyr University Student Nutrition Association.
"Every dollar from the funds we raised will be used to provide homeless teenagers nutritious meals," Potter says. "So even though only one team was crowned Top Chef, everybody who participated, from teams to cheering fans, ended up feeling like winners."
Having fun and raising money for a worthy cause never tasted so good!