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Plate for Plate

May 21, 2009

Earlier this week I was given the opportunity to go to Trenton, Florida with Chef Justin and Tom to cater the Plate for Plate luncheon. Basically, the Plateagtag for Plate luncheon is the culmination of a contest held in Florida for all of the Florida Future Farmers of America (FFA) groups. The goal is to sell as many of the ag license plates as possible, and the group that sells the most wins a catered lunch by Chef Justin and Commissioner Bronson also comes and speaks to the group.

This is the second year that I’ve helped with the lunch, it’s truly a lot of fun. Chef Justin and Tom had the brunt of the hard work though. I just was there for some assistance and comedic relief. Kidding. But in all seriousness, Chef Justin and Tom really pulled it out this year, they had to prep enough food on Monday to feed 150 people, for the event on Tuesday. (I also won’t mention that after their long day of prepping enormous amounts of food, that we had to leave at 5am the next day.)

Here was the menu:

  • Florida Herb Grilled Chicken with Southern Tomato Jam
  • Wildflower Honey and Mustard Potato Salad with Crispy Bacon
  • Warm Florida Sweet Corn and Cheddar Soufflé
  • Florida Snap Bean and Feta Salad with Creamy Yogurt Dressing
  • Three Melon and Berry Fruit Salad Infused with Lemongrass & Mint
  • Florida Blueberry and Citrus Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Pretty intense huh?

They did a great job, Justin really knows what he’s doing when it comes to catering for large groups, his past experience really helps.  The lunch went smoothly and all the kids really enjoyed it. They are truly the future of Florida agriculture. It’s so neat to see so many kids really into agriculture and loving every aspect of it. We even got questioned about where Justin got the watermelon for the fruit salad. They didn’t want to know where (like Publix, Sam’s, etc) they wanted to literally know WHERE the watermelon was from. They asked because they knew watermelon wasn’t in season just yet. They caught us. 🙂

The biggest surprise of the day for me though was how big of a hit Justin’s tomato jam was. I kid you not, that’s the first time I’ve ever had so many people ask for the recipe. I promise, I’ll get Justin to post it a little later on today!

Here are a few behind the scenes pictures. Enjoy!

50 lb bag of Florida red potatoes, yes they were all used.

50 lb bag of Florida red potatoes, yes they were all used.

Tom cooking up 90lbs of chicken!

Tom cooking up 90lbs of chicken!

Chef Justin chopping up tons of fruit.

Chef Justin chopping up tons of fruit.

Chef Justin and Commissioner Bronson are in that crowd somewhere. I refered to the crowd as the paparazzi. They loved Justin.

Chef Justin and Commissioner Bronson are in that crowd somewhere. I refered to the crowd as the paparazzi. They loved Justin.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Nicole permalink
    May 26, 2009 3:22 pm

    Sounds like it went well. The menu looks delicious!

  2. Chris permalink
    May 28, 2009 3:49 pm

    Yes, there are still kids out there who “Believe in agriculture with a faith born not of words, but of deeds.” FFA and vocational agriculture are outstanding programs. In many rural communities, the agriculture teacher is more widely known than most elected officials and certainly more respected.

    It should be pointed out, however that your watermelon was most likely from Florida, only further south than the Trenton/Newberry fields. Probably from the Wauchula area. They know thier melons in Trenton as many of those students spent some quality time loading watermelons.

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