By Alyssa Naimoli
A sweet competition brought a plethora of delicious desserts to Daly’s Dining Hall as the finalists of Dessert Wars took on their last competition. The desserts were a special treat for students and an even greater experience for the bakers.
The three finalists competed on April 24 as they each scrambled to serve their desserts to hungry students. Each finalist had his or her own station in which to put finishing touches and serve desserts while interacting with diners.
Each of the three finalists made sweet treats from a list of required ingredients. The unique blend of flavors gave the pastries a strangely delectable appeal.
Junior advertising major Leonora Paul’s Lemongrass Glazed Apple Cake took the first prize for the night. The delicious apple cake was the perfect combination of lemongrass, apple and almond flavoring.
“I’ve loved baking since I was a little girl, and I used to make a lot of lemon and almond cakes from scratch,” said Paul. “Just recently I’ve been making apple pies, so I thought the combination of the three flavors in one dessert would work well together and complement each other.”
Sophomore marketing major Pauline Ybañez’s Chocolate Piggy attracted dozens of students to the line in hopes they could get a bite of the tasty chocolate treat.
“It’s a moist chocolate cupcake with a white chocolate ganache frosting topped with caramelized bacon bits and drizzled with dulce de leche,” said Ybañez.
While there was “no crazy inspiration for this pretty simple cupcake,” it caused quite a buzz among students and the line was continuously refreshed with new hungry faces.
Sophomore musical theater major Sarah Carter’s Lemon Basil Cupcake was another hit among students. The delicate cupcake was the perfect blend of lemon and basil in a simple pound cake with tasty cream cheese frosting. The cupcake was also “topped with lemon zest for a little pizazz,” said Carter.
Each dessert was an original recipe from each of the final bakers. There were three required ingredients for each dessert; contestants had to pick two basic ingredients from lists that included marshmallows and chocolate chips as well as one challenge ingredient from a different list with items such as bacon and paprika.
The finalists were all elated to be bringing their desserts to life and serving them to excited students. The competition was a sweet treat, and the reward was even sweeter.
The prize for first place was a year’s supply of cupcakes from Sweetly Spirited Cupcakes, tickets to Krewella and two other shows in New York City, along with spending money and some Bronc Bucks for the upcoming hectic final weeks. There was also a selection of five runner-up prizes.
Though the runner-ups get prizes of their own, Ybañez felt that “seeing people enjoy the food I created is a reward in and of itself.”
Though Paul took first place for the night with her Lemongrass Glazed Apple Cake, the experience was an exciting prize for all three finalists. The hustle and bustle of the kitchen reminded them why they had entered the competition to begin with.
“This experience has been very fun, although I don’t think I have ever eaten this much cake, apples, and lemongrass in my life, but it was worth it,” said Paul.
The delicious treat of a competition was the perfect outing as the semester comes to an end. Nothing is more rewarding than a good cake, not only for the students, but for the bakers as well.
Paul congratulated her runner-ups for creating their unique desserts and hopes they will continue to be inspired to bake.
“Just being able to share my love for cooking and being challenged by limiting what can go inside our desserts excited me about this competition, because it caused me to think beyond the usual desserts that people hear of every day,” said Paul.
printed in the 4/30/14 edition