The School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts continued their success, winning in the Savory category at the Research Chefs Association (RCA) Competition that was held in Puerto Rico.
Taylor’s University remained the defending champion at the 2017 Research Chefs Association Competition, with the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts (HCTA) continuing their success and gaining three awards at the ceremony held in San Juan, Puerto Rico (USA). The Taylor's student team called “Team Plus Ultra”, consisted of four final year students in the Bachelor of Science (Hons.) Culinology® and they won the top award in the savory category. Led by Bertrand Barrett Tan, the team also included Jereby Poh Mun Xuen, Abdul Hannan bin Zulkarnain and Muhammad Ramzali bin Mohammed Akhiar and they were trained by Senior Lecturer Dr. Wendy Lim Pek Kui. "We were the defending champions and have retained our overall title," said Professor Dr. Pradeep Nair, the Deputy Vice Chancellor of Taylor's University. "We are so happy for our students and lecturers, whom competed and won against top universities in the U.S. and Canada" adding that "Culinology®, which combines culinary arts, food science and food technology, is one of the most promising and fastest growing sectors in the food industry". The team's winning entry, "Plantain Pastelon – with turkey picadillo and spicy mango sauce" was inspired by the rich history of Puerto Rican cuisine, reimagined as a frozen entrée while retaining its flavours of tradition. The accompanying mango sauce brought all the flavours together and was naturally gluten free. Its attractive price point at US$2.50 also made such a nutritious meal hard to resist. This year, the RCA also introduced a new category in Pastry - where the Taylor's Team Cuatro took second place. In the Savory category, Team BAM also took an additional spot in third place. Taylor's University remains the only higher education institution in Asia to be named champions at RCA. Each team had to develop a proposal for a concept which included both a 'gold-standard' recipe (restaurant quality version) and also the corresponding commercial product with manufacturing details. The top four finalist teams then competed on-site, creating a fresh 'gold-standard' version of their products which had to match-up against the proposed commercialised and processed version. In addition to the prizes awarded, RCA presented its President's Award to Dr. Neethia Ari Ragavan, Dean of the School of Hospitality, Tourism & Culinary Arts at Taylor's University. The award recognised Dr. Neethia's significant contribution to the association and industry, and for his tireless support in the mission of Culinology®. To find out more about the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts click here – Global Matters (2017)