CHEFS showed their cooking skills in the Open Cooking Challenge dubbed as the "Battle of the Chefs" held Wednesday, December 29, 2021, in Dapitan City, the shrine city of the Philippines.

The Battle of the Chefs, also known as "Kaluto ni Rizal" is part of the Handuraw Festival 2021 that culminated on Rizal Day, December 30.

Dapitan City holds the Handuraw Festival annually to commemorate the national hero's death and to promote its tourism industry.

Also part of the Handuraw Festival is the Dr. Jose Rizal and Josephine Bracken look-alike competitions.

Dapitan City Tourism Officer Apple Marie Agolong said Friday, December 31, that the Battle of the Chefs had three categories, namely, Relleno Cooking Challenge, Paboritong Bistek ni Rizal Cooking Competition, and Special Pancit Cooking Competition.

"Those who participated in the competition are from different local restaurants and catering services," Agolong said.

She said the Team Marwoods Chef Angelito Asumbrado emerged as champion in the Relleno Cooking Competition, while Chef Joseph Balladares of the Balladares Catering Services landed first runner-up and The Backyard Chef Richard Binondo Jumawan as second runner-up.

Balladares, Asumbrado, and Chef Noy Quizo of Sassy's Kitchen won as champion, first runner-up and second runner-up, respectively, in the Paboritong Bistek ni Rizal Cooking Competition.

In the Special Pancit Cooking Competition, The Backyard Chef Erril Legaspi, Asumbrado, and Kodang Cookery Chef Agustin Galleposo won as the champion, first runner-up and second runner-up, respectively.

Meanwhile, Joshua Tagapan won as the champion in the Rizal look-alike competition. Jasper Lacaspe and Claurence Palpagan landed first and second runners-up, respectively.

Six other competitors won consolation prizes. They were Junrey Lagunday, Angelo Dayme, Rass Niel Doysaras, Hoyt MontaƱo, Glenn Tagapan, and Jose Frank Dela Cruz.

In the Josephine Bracken look-alike competition, Gellian Mae Cabalida, Sharian Maree Lana McCulloch, and Maybelle Adoro won as the champion, first runner-up and second runner-up, respectively.

The consolation winners were Hanna Bernadette Locquiao, Trisha Angelica, Gendi Kaye Hamoy, Cherry Taruc, Kamila Montifalcon, and Kyle Allyssa Abano.

The winners in the three competitions received cash prizes and plaques, according to Agolong.

She said the names of the winners in the Battle of the Chefs will be included in the food directory of Dapitan City.

The Handuraw Festival 2021 marked the 125th anniversary of the martyrdom of Rizal, who lived the life of a political exile in Dapitan City for a period of four years and 13 days from July 17, 1892 to July 31, 1896.

The festival merges historical, cultural, social and economic elements related to the life of Rizal in Dapitan City.

Handuraw is the Cebuano word for "the power to imagine," "to reminisce," or "flashback." (SunStar Zamboanga)

Source: SunStar (