Jerk cheese, jerk peanut butter, jerk caviar? Why not? Find out how and be the first to sample some of the most creative jerk inspired dishes at the 8th Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival on November 8 at Markham Park in the city of Sunrise.
The cooking promises to be hot and spicy as the Publix Jerk Cook-off pits celebrity chefs against each other in a quick-fire contest. Patrons will get a real treat when the celebrity cook-off gets under way with big-name personalities such as NBC television broadcaster Sharon Lawson, 103.5 The Beat’s Vanessa James, Rodney Baltimore of Hot 105, and WPLG 10 news reporter Terrel Forney. The fun, and some serious cookin’, will begin when the clock strikes and the celebs choose their favorite ingredients. Then it’s up to the judges, to taste and crown the best celebrity chef of them all.
Hot and Spicy
“The Publix Jerk Cook-off pavilion is always hot and spicy and full of excitement”, says June Minto, festival food and competition coordinator, adding, ‘last year we had several celebrity contestants and judges; this year will be no different”.
In fact, cooking demonstrations will be led by some of the industry’s best known chefs. Irie Spice (Hugh Sinclair), always in demand and recognized for his culinary flair across South Florida; Helen Willinsky, jerk aficionado, owner of Helen’s Tropical Exotics, and successful cookbook author; and prominent chef and top ranking participant on Bravo television’s Top Chef program Sara Mair, will show patrons the limitless uses of jerk and officiate the big competition of the day.
The Publix Jerk Cook-Off heats up with ten participants who know seh fi dem jerk a di bess. With all the ingredients they will need at their fingertips, the expectant jerkers will show off their culinary skills to the renowned judges who will make their marks based on taste, presentation, attire, and the ‘want more factor’. With bated breath and satisfied taste buds, judges will declare the top winner who will walk away with the $1500 first prize and the coveted Dutch Pot award, indeed a mark of distinction among Caribbean culinary artistes.
Over in the Grace Kitchen, patrons will also get in on the food arts with cooking demonstrations featuring some of Grace Food’s newest products. Get ideas for lunch box snacks, hors d’oeuvres, and formal meals from Grace’s cooking expert Chef Mazie Miller. You might even get a chance to stir the pot at this hands-on cooking station.
Stir the Pot
Get your tickets early for the much anticipated largest Caribbean food festival in the United States. Remember, organizers have held advance ticket prices at last year’s level — just ten dollars, available online at www.jerkfestival.com or at selected Caribbean outlets. Day of event tickets will cost $20 at the gate. Children ten years and under will be admitted free. Special all inclusive VIP packages are available through the festival office. Bring the whole family and make it a day of jerk, fun, and entertainment.
The Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival, presented by Publix and Air Jamaica, is sponsored by Western Union, Digicel, Tobacco Free Florida, Toyota of Hollywood, The Jamaica Tourist Board, Jamaica National Money Transfer, and County Line Chiropractic Centers. The event is produced by Jamaican Jerk Festival USA, Inc., in association with Jamaica Awareness, Inc.