Two ninth-grade students–Evelyn Corona Ramirez, 14, and Cheyenne Washington, 15– who are members of NYU Lutheran Family Health Centers Project Reach Youth (PRY) Track program at the John Jay High School Campus came out the top winners last week in the 2016 Recipe Rescue cooking competition.
Hosted by the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD), the competition challenged students in a two-hour competition against two other high school students to prepare and cook a healthy recipe makeover.
First-place winner Evelyn Ramirez prepared a Mexican dish known as, “Pastel de Tres Leches” (or Three Milk Cake). “This dish is normally prepared for special occasions, like birthdays and holidays and this day was special to me so I decided to go for it,” she said.
Fourth-place winner Cheyenne Washington prepared a healthy platter comprised of chicken and broccoli, whole wheat pasta, and unsalted butter, which also wow’ed the judges. She said she was thankful to be part of the competition: “I am really happy to be involved, it was fun and exciting!”
“Seeing them come from learning the basics of cooking to taking part in their first competition makes me truly proud for them,” said Kenneth Williams, their cooking instructor.
For more than 14 years, NYU Lutheran Family Health Centers’ PRY Track program has been providing afterschool academic enrichment activities such as dance and fitness sessions, SAT prep courses, and cooking classes, including drop-out prevention services to students at the John Jay High School Campus.
“I don’t know what the next step will be for me,” Ramirez said, “but I will definitely continue cooking.”