Have you ever tried Caprese-style rolls wrapped in roasted beetroot with orange dressing or pork tenderloin in red wine sauce with honey-roasted pear? These and other pork specialties were prepared by competitive teams of gastronomy students as part of the 3rd year of the international cooking competition organized by the Gymnasium and Secondary Vocational School in Podbořany. The event took place on March 22, 2023 in the premises of the school as part of the international project called “Young Meets Old With Culinary Heritage” (project number 2022-1-BG01-KA220-VET-000085377), the main content of which is the meeting of the young with the older generation in within the culinary heritage.

In a very friendly and relaxed atmosphere that prevailed throughout the competition day, all two-person teams got down to work after the initial welcome. During the morning of the competition, they prepared and served their dishes to an evaluation committee made up of representatives of all participating organizations – i.e. not only the organizing GSOŠ, but also, for example, directors of partner schools from Germany or Poland. At the head of the commission was Jiří Janoušek, the chef of the National House in Podbořany, who consistently evaluated all the dishes. And how did it turn out? Pupils from the Polish partner school in Pszczynie took first and second place, third place went to the team of the local organizing school GSOŠ Podbořany, composed of Karolína Nováková and Michal Vízek (both students of the 4th year of the Gastronomy course).

But what was the biggest and most powerful experience for everyone involved? The participation of two teams consisting of clients of the Home for the Elderly in Podbořany. They, with the help of their assistants Mrs. Marie Edlová and Iveta Vrhelová, performed extraordinary performances that we could only smile at. Not only did they boldly compete with the younger generation with their physical endurance, but their presented dishes of traditional Czech cuisine – stuffed neck with mashed potatoes or pork roasts and excellent cabbage prepared from turnips, an almost forgotten ingredient today, enriched the entire competition.

We congratulate all participants and thank them for their excellent performances, professional approach and a beautiful meaningful day full of unforgettable experiences.

Eva Pospíšilová

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