Dental School Team Wins Iron Chef Competition

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The cook-off at the Alumni House was fiercely contested, but in the end, it was “Tacos Three Ways” by three second-year dental students that swayed the judges.

The winning culinary stylists, Jolie Goodman, Krizia Garcia and Natalie Chien, presented the judges with a veggie taco (crushed peanuts, potatoes, avocado, watercress, salsa, cabbage and of course, bean sprouts), a tuna taco (seared tuna, mango salsa and bean sprouts) and a salmon taco (seared salmon on a bed of cabbage topped with bean sprouts).

 “Competing in the competition was a lot of fun. We all love to cook, and this was a great opportunity to show off our skills,” said Goodman. “We were born to cook, but it all starts with a love for food!”

The Iron Chef Competition, one of the Asian Health Caucus’ most enjoyable activities of the year, was held on November 15.  The Iron Chef competition is open to three-student teams from all the UCSF schools. Teams are given $30 and a secret ingredient and must prepare a dish in 50 minutes for a panel of six judges, composed of faculty members and students. This year, the faculty judges were Dr. Donald Kishi from the School of Pharmacy and Dr. Mark Ryder from the 

School of Dentistry.

Student residents and audience members, selected from a raffle, made up the remaining four judges. Five teams participated this year, representing students from the dental, medical and pharmacy schools. 

If you haven’t guessed by now, this year’s secret ingredient was bean sprouts, and it was worked into all kinds of dishes, ranging from traditional stir-fry dishes to fusion tacos and even a peanut butter smoothie dessert.  The judges sampled all the dishes, while audience members were treated to a delicious Chinese meal of chow mein, fried rice, broccoli beef, candied-walnut shrimp and chicken dishes. Each team described its approach to its meal to all those present in the mock Kitchen Stadium.

Members of the winning team each received a $30 Starbucks gift certificate, which will come in handy as they study for finals this week.   

Asian Health Caucus is one of the oldest student-run organizations at UCSF. It was founded in 1975 “to promote mutual understanding and friendship among all members in the UCSF community, as well as increase awareness of Asian and Asian-American health issues.” The work of Asian Health Caucus includes participation in health fairs, mentoring round table meetings, minority bone-marrow drives and fun activities to get professional schools together.