Monday, August 3, 2015

SJ teen competing on 'Chopped'

Brandon Medley, 15, of Sewell, going into 10th grade at Gloucester County Institute of Technology, had to cook with dandelion and Cornish hens.

SJ teen competing on 'Chopped'

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Brandon Medley of Sewell competing on "Chopped."
Brandon Medley of Sewell competing on "Chopped." FOOD NETWORK

Following Food Network's Chopped Teen Tournament this summer?

So far, Philadelphia-area culinary whiz kids have been coming out on top in the four-person cooking competitions.

Jason Khayin, 14, of Holland, Bucks County, won the premiere episode July 15, and Dante Foggy, 17, of Burlington Township, won his round on July 22. Winners from each of four episodes will head to the finale on Aug. 12, where the winner gets $25,000 and a culinary school scholarship.

In the fray for the third episode tonight (July 29) will be Brandon Medley, 15, of Sewell, going into 10th grade at Gloucester County Institute of Technology. 

He said he applied "because I just thought it would be cool - which it was - and a once-in-a-lifetime experience."

"It was a long day but a fun day," Brandon said last week. "There was a lot of shooting, and you have all these great chefs and people you look up to watching you. And you're also [competing] with kids who cook like professional chefs."

The basket ingredients include Cornish hens, dandelion greens, and ice cream.

Brandon says he started in the kitchen around age 7, "baking and stuff like that. Trying stuff out. Experimenting and learning from my mistakes."

He'd like to attend the Culinary Institute of America. After graduation, he said, "I'd like to travel the world and learn about different foods. After that, I'd like to open a couple of restaurants."

His restaurants not only would offer what he called "a pleasant experience," but you'd also "learn about food." 

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Michael Klein, the editor/producer of philly.com/Food, writes about the local restaurant scene in his Inquirer column "Table Talk." Have a question? Email it! See his Inquirer work here.

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