LIVINGSTON, Calif. - The West Coast's premier Fresh Chicken Cooking Contest is inviting home, amateur and professional chefs to stir up some cooking creativity with its call for entries for the second annual Foster Farms Fresh Chicken Cooking Contest.
The winning contestant will receive a grand prize of $10,000 plus a one-year supply of Foster Farms fresh chicken. Hot off the heels of its successful first-ever cooking contest, Foster Farms is encouraging residents of California, Oregon and Washington to submit their favorite, original chicken recipes for consideration. Recipes must feature Foster Farms fresh chicken and should be inspired by ingredients grown on the West Coast as a testament to Foster Farms' commitment to foods that are fresh, locally-grown and always natural.
The deadline to enter is May 31 before midnight and the contest will culminate with finals held on Friday, Sept. 30 at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in St. Helena, Calif., during National Chicken Month.
"We hope to build on the success of last year's contest, which drew thousands of entries ranging from time-tested multi-generational recipes to brand new creations," said Ira Brill, Director of Marketing and Advertising Services for Foster Farms.
"As a longstanding West Coast brand committed to bringing consumers fresh chicken grown close to home and delivered fresh to their store in 48 hours or less, Foster Farms is pleased that this contest inspires so many to find new and creative ways to prepare our locally-grown fresh chicken. Our contest is a celebration of the West Coast bounty and all of the fresh produce and foods we are lucky to have at our fingertips."
Foster Farms will host regional semifinal events in San Diego, Calif., Portland, Ore., and Seattle, in August. Fifteen semifinalists - five from each state - will receive $100 and compete in person at the regional competitions. Six regional winners - two from each state - will receive $1,000.
The six regional winners will head to the final cook-off in St. Helena to compete for the grand prize of $10,000 and a one-year supply of fresh Foster Farms chicken. The six finalists will receive travel and lodging accommodations to the Napa Valley.
A special prize will be awarded to the contestant with the best use of fresh, local ingredients (last year's winning recipe highlighted fresh spinach and dill).
The contest is open to all California, Oregon and Washington residents over the age of 18. Entries will be judged by a panel of leading food media and culinary professionals. The scoring structure will be weighted to reward contestants whose recipes highlight truly fresh and local ingredients.
For complete contest rules contestants can visit www.fosterfarms.com/cookingcontest. No previous grand prize winners of the Foster Farms Fresh Chicken Cooking Contest are eligible to participate. Entries can be submitted online at www.fosterfarms.com/cookingcontest, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to Foster Farms, Cooking Contest, P.O. Box 306, Livingston, CA 95334.
2010 Winning Recipe:
Spinach Stuffed Chicken Breasts
Alexandria Boswell from La Jolla, CA
4 Foster Farms chicken breast halves, boneless and skinless
1 Tbls olive oil
1/2 cup onion, finely diced
1 bag (10 oz) spinach leaves
1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
1/2 cup Feta cheese crumbles
1/2 cup Monterey Jack cheese, grated
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
Preheat oven to 375° F.
In large skillet over medium-high heat, warm olive oil. Add onions to skillet and sauté until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add spinach to skillet, cover, reduce heat to medium and cook until spinach is wilted. Transfer onion and spinach to large bowl. Add dill, Feta cheese, Monterey Jack cheese, salt and pepper to bowl; mix well to combine.
Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Place eggs in small bowl and panko in pie plate. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
Using a sharp knife, slit each chicken breast along long side, cutting only about 3/4 of the way through. Divide spinach mixture into four sections and stuff each breast with a portion of the mixture. Dip breasts first in egg mixture and then in panko to coat. Place chicken on prepared pan and lightly coat chicken with olive oil cooking spray. Place in hot oven and cook 45 minutes or until chicken is done.