Last February I went to San Francisco to judge the “Elevate a Classic Dessert with Scharffen Berger Chocolate” contest, and as usual it was an afternoon filled with some amazing recipes and great company. I loved participating for the 3rd year in a row as a judge, and this year’s theme really worked it out: how do you improve on a classic? Rather then finding far-fetched dessert ideas, this year’s contest challenged participants to take a classic, add their take, yet keep it delicious and true to the essence of the dish. I’m happy to say that while all the finalists were good, the top 3 really stood out.
Here are the winners from this year! Congrats to everyone!
The Grand Prize (and $10,000!) went to Jennifer Daskevich for her Indulgent Chocolate Lovers’ Whoopie Pie with Coconut Pecan Filling and Ganache Drizzle. While it sounds over the top (IT WAS!), it was balanced and elegant, and surprisingly not too sweet. If there’s anything I dislike more it’s sugar for sugar’s sake. Not so with this winner. Congrats, Jennifer!
Second prize was a Malted Chocolate Ice Cream with Pretzel Bark. Oh jeez was this fantastic.
Third place went to Linda Wang for her Tall, Dark, and Sophisticated S’Mores recipe which was not only beautiful but fun to eat. I loved that they looked like ‘lil burgers.
Thanks to all the wonderful folks at Scharffen Burger for including me again this year as a judge, and a special thanks to my fellow judges John Scharffenberger, Alice Medrich (looooooove this woman), the amazing Chef Elizabeth Falkner, and Babette Pepaj of Bakespace.com.
You can find more information and the recipes for the winning entries at Scharffenberger.com.