Ashley and Shanika were battle ready

Jack Hayward Junior High School (JHJHS) Family and Consumer Science Department hosted the first-ever Cup Cake Wars Competition, which is one of a series of intra-school events held in celebration of Technical and Vocational Week that began Monday, February 5 under the theme, ‘Entrepreneurship: Leading the Way to a Sustainable Economy.’

Charlton Browne, JHJHS Technical and Vocational and Food and Nutrition Department Head orchestrated the Cup Cake Wars Competition, which challenges competitors to not only be creative but also exercise the skills taught to deliver flavorful, moist, delicious and eye-popping cupcakes.

“Cupcakes are the ultimate indulgence for any sweet-toothed craving and the JHJHS Family and Consumer Science Department is elated to host its first-ever Cup Cake Wars Competition.

“Twelve students of the Food and Nutrition Department have been paired up and will comprise six teams that would compete in the Cup Cake Wars Competition; each team is required to make two feature cupcakes of their choosing, exploring various flavors, decorating and presentation profiles.

“The Cup Cake Wars Competition would allow students to gain knowledge and exposure, as it relates to competing in inter-school events and demonstrate their love of culinary arts.

“Competitors have been allotted two hours to bake, decorate and present their cupcakes to the judges, who are Yvonne Ward, District Superintendent Eastern Grand Bahama and The Cays; Gaylene Pinder, Education Officer Technical and Vocational Studies; Shennan Rolle, JHJH School Principal and Krishna Beneby, JHJH School Senior Mistress.

“Additionally, competitors are to ensure that throughout the duration of Cup Cake Wars their work stations are clean and they proceed in the safest and hygienic manner,” Browne shared.

Encouraged to make use of indigenous, native fruits, vegetables and spices, both in the cupcake recipe as well as the decorations, competing teams smiled with delight as they all relied on their innovative ideas to present their best cupcake treat, which each claimed would secure their position in the winner’s spot.

Competing teams comprised students from seventh through ninth grade as follows:

1. Team #1 Ashley Poitier and Shanika Charite- Sweet Potato Cider Cupcakes with Butter Cream Frosting and Coconut Vanilla Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Filling and Coconut Flakes.

2. Team #2 Miracle Thomas and Roganne Rolle - Almond/Cinnamon with Almond Frosting and Chocolate with Vanilla Icing.

3. Team #3 Tatyanna Morley and Jaden Russell- Vanilla cupcake with Cream Cheese Filling and Chocolate cupcakes with Red Cream Cheese Frosting.

4. Team #4 Trevaya Bain and Firnell Neymour- Vanilla and Chocolate Cupcakes.

5. Team #5 Tennika Darling and Flonique Lightbourne -Chocolate Chip Deluxe and Red Velvet Cupcakes.

6. Team #6 Asiah Knowles and Darronae Sturrup - Oreo Chocolate Chip Cookie Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting and Strawberry Cupcakes with Buttercream Icing.

Excited and looking forward to the competitors’ delectable cupcakes, Senior Mistress Beneby said, “Indeed I am delighted to serve as one of the judges of the Cup Cake Wars Competition, which is allows our students to put into practice the skills taught in the Food & Nutrition Department.

“As you are aware the Cup Cake Wars Competition provides the opportunity for all our students in this department to compete and receive first-hand experience on what it is like to compete in this type of setting.

“Many of them rarely have a chance to compete in the Local and National Interschool Culinary Arts Competitions and it is commendable that Mr. Browne seeks to expose the students of JHJHS to a competition setting.

“Competitors are bubbling over with excitement and anticipation of securing one of the top three spots and they are learning that not everything in a competition as in life goes exactly as planned.

“Certainly, the competition serves as an awesome learning experience and what I am most interested in is the fact that of the 12 competitors there is only one young man, who has stepped up to flex his culinary muscles.

“The Culinary Arts Industry is constantly growing and allows those skilled in this field to become their own boss but moreover it is a profession that is mainly dominated by men.

“We definitely hope his involvement in the Cup Cake Wars Competition assists other young male students to not only become interested in this field but develop an entrepreneurial passion for it,exposing the many opportunities the culinary arts can provide.

“Undoubtedly we are looking forward to great things from this young man, who is demonstrating that he has a good grasp on all he has been taught in the Food & Nutrition Department and the fact that he is a seventh grader, who is competing at this stage right out of the gate is wonderful.

“The judges are definitely looking forward to the taste, creativity and overall presentation of the cupcakes, especially the students’ use of native produce and demonstrating their creaming and design skills.”

Cognizant of the fact that the Cup Cake Wars Competition helps students to prepare for external examinations and offers a great overall experience for them, as it also highlights their area of expertise, Browne and the judges are hopeful it will be an annual event.

Based on the success of the Cup Cake Wars Competition, it is also hoped that eventually, fellow schools would host this event during the Technical and Vocational Week making it a fixture of its series of activities, using it as a stepping-stone for other competitions like the Young Chef Competition.

Once the flour settled and the scores we tallied, District Superintendent Ward proudly announced the winning teams with first place being captured by Ashley Poitier and Shanika Charite; second place by Tennika Darling and Flonique Lightbourne and closing out the third place position was Asiah Knowles and Darronae Sturrup.

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