The most delicious place to be on Sunday, November 13 is Markham Park in Sunrise where families, friends, celebrities, chefs and food lovers will gather for the 15th Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival! This will be the mecca for mouthwatering jerk goodness … all in one place, all day long.
Managing Partner and cook-off organizer June Minto is excited about activities in the Publix Culinary Pavilion, featuring an awesome line-up of chefs for the cooking demonstrations and the exciting, must-see cooking competitions she has planned. This is where amateur and professional chefs, celebrity chefs and personalities go head to head to see who emerges with the best jerk dishes.
Two-time Food Network’s Chopped Champion Chef Andre Fowles will be showing his cooking chops with a demonstration at the event, and will be the special guest at Publix Aprons Cooking School in Plantation on November 10. Chef Fowles was named “Chef on the Rise” by the Jamaica Observer and is well-respected in the kitchen. Patrons will also have a chance to watch cooking demos with Golden Krust’s Chef Odean, who was featured on CBS’s Undercover Boss.
Patrons will have a chance to interact with chefs during their cooking demos and will get their burning questions about jerk foods answered by the best of the best. And, of course, our resident and traveling chef Irie Spice will be on hand to spice things up with his big personality.”
Competing for the Love of Jerk!
Expect to see, and perhaps even taste, the culinary prowess of acclaimed chefs and celebrities in the Celebrity Chef Throwdown and the Celebrity Quick Fire Challenge. Of course, there’ll be the famous Publix Jerk Cook-off where chefs will battle to the spicy end for a chance to win the coveted Dutch Pot Trophy, a cash prize, and most importantly, bragging rights! This is where competitors leave it all on the grill! They do it for the taste, the thrill and the love of it.
This year’s Celebrity Chef Throwdown will see Chef Eddie Jackson, former cornerback in the NFL and The Next Food Network Star Season 11 winner, going up against Chef Maxcel Hardy who was the full-time personal chef for NBA All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire. Chef Eddie’s quite at home in the kitchen, and after retiring from the NFL, he took his cooking to another level with everything from family recipes to culinary creations influenced by his travels while in the NFL. He’s launched his own food truck, “The Caribbean Grill,” and hosts The Food Network’s Kids BBQ.
Chef Maxcel is no pushover in the kitchen, with some 12 years of culinary experience and celebrity clients. He co-authored the cookbook, 100 Easy Recipes for Pros and Rookies in the Kitchen with Stoudemire and is currently co-authoring Marley Cookbook with entrepreneur and former University of Miami football player Rohan Marley. When Chef Maxcel is not cooking, he’s creating chef apparel for his line Chef Max Designs and working to end hunger in America through his organization, One Chef Can 86 Hunger. With this much star power, there’s sure to be sparks flying in the kitchen as chefs Eddie and Maxcel vie for the top spot in this prestigious competition.
For the Celebrity Quick Fire Challenge, we’ll see WPLG Channel 10’s Todd Tongen facing off with the newly crowned Miss Jamaica World, Ashlie Barrett! What kind of spice will they add to the mix? It’s anyone’s guess, but we’re sure to see a hard-fought battle between the two.
For the famous Publix Jerk Cook-off, professional and amateur chefs will bring their best creations to the grill. Among this year’s competitors is Dr. Carl Zollicoffer, an OBGYN who knows his way around the kitchen. He might be competing against professionals, but Minto cautions patrons not to underestimate the amateurs. “In the past Dr. Sharon Robinson, an amateur chef, walked away with the win,” Minto says. “It’s about who brings the best jerk dish to the table!”
Minto also encourages patrons to come early to participate and partake of all the offers over at the Publix Marketplace. “We’ll have a presentation informing patrons on just about everything they need to know about using the right combination of fresh spices and herbs to create delectable dishes. Plus, there’ll be lots of giveaways, Publix Gift Cards, Grace gift baskets, aprons, T-shirts, Publix Greenwise products and so much more.”