Sunday, March 23, 2008

Iron Chef Challenge

For the third year, my family gathered today for our Easter event. The last 2 years we've had a blast doing an Amazing Race and this time we had an Iron Chef Challenge. Working in teams of four, we had to create a minimum of 3 dishes using a secret ingredient - TORTILLAS! We were very lucky to use the home ec lab at Jerry's school - the perfect location!

Organizers extraordinaire - my sister, Esther and my niece, Jill. They are a mother and daughter combo - quite the masterminds at dreaming up events!

Every group got an envelope of money (from the entry fee we each paid), with which we purchased our ingredients from the onsite grocery store. Extra things could be bought at the local grocery store uptown.

Elisha created the recipe for our group's Roasted Asparagus and Chicken Pizza with Feta. This one could be published - it was so delicious!

Every team needs a good dishwasher - and my Uncle Gord was ours!

Taste testing by Jen!

Naomi was working on their appetizer, Salmon Filled Cups with Spoons (made out of fried tortilla strips) - the most creatively presented appetizer. They also made a huge Taco Vegetable Salad (with beans, corn, avocados, tomatoes, celery, lettuce and chicken), Quesadillas, and a Vanilla Pie with Chocolate Dipped Strawberries and Pineapple. Her group had my Mom, Ed and Tony in it.

Jerry was part of the all guys team with Bob, Larry and Leo, which was the team with the least experience and could have won a prize for rookie cooks, I think. They made Tomato Cups with Goat Cheese dip and tortilla chips, Shepherd's Pie, Fajitas, and Deep Fried Chocolate Dessert Tortillas, which quite possibly was the best dessert.

This was our youngest little chef-in-training!

Each group presented their creations to the group for judging at the end of 3 hours. This group (Darrin, Pam, Ruth, and my Dad) made a Mexican Dip, Chicken Taco Salad, Enchilada Casserole and Strawberry Tortilla Crepes. Their presentation was awesome!

My group (Elisha, Jen, Gord and me) made Herbed Tortilla Chips with Salsa, Taco Salad, the pizza, and this Strawberry Stack Dessert.

By the time the taste testing was over, we were all stuffed - there seriously was so much good food created today! It's pretty amazing what you can make with tortillas! After judging, the winning team took home some "iron" prizes - a waffle iron, ironman watches, or an iron. And everyone had leftovers to take home too!! It was an awesome way to spend an afternoon making more memories. One of the things I love best about these gatherings is how we can involve the whole group, which ranges in age from about 20 to 75 (not counting Meadow). I am so blessed to spend this time with my family.

Happy Easter to you! May God's love and the gift of grace that He gave us be your celebration this weekend.


  1. What a fun challenge! And everything sounds so delicous! Happy Easter to you my friend!!

  2. What a wonderful, fun way to be together I LOVE it! We spent a quiet wk-end as Bre & I both worked. But I still managed to get some chocolate into me! We leave Friday for MX YAY!

  3. Your family is so much fun! LOVE this fun challenge! xoxo

  4. It looks like SOOOO much fun! I wish we could have been there! The dishes look and sound yummy! Can't wait to hear more details!

  5. I absolutely love the idea of your Easter Challenges! What an amazing way to bring the whole family together, and what fun!

  6. seriously you guys are the COOLEST family!!!!!

  7. We have got the most amazing and creative family. I love that we are always doing and trying new things young and old alike. Can we do something like this when we come to visit? We miss out on all these crazy events. It looks and sounds awesome...a few dishes we'll have to try creating again?