Comfort Gourmet Dessert Wins Edwards® "Indulgence" Contest

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Trendy "Tini" and Key Lime Pops were rated high.

American Eagle pilot Bonnie Hicks of Lancaster, Ohio, claimed a Grand Prize valued at $5,000 in the "Edwards Invent Your Own Indulgence" national dessert contest. Bonnie delighted judges with her "Georgia Pecan Sweet Potatoes" topped with lightly-toasted marshmallows, cinnamon, and nuts.

"You took an old school tradition and created comfort gourmet," said Five-star Corporate Executive Chef Fritz Schultz, as he presented Bonnie the Grand Prize medal. "Visually it's a knock-out. And it has a very unique flavor."

Bonnie, who flies out of Chicago's O'Hare Airport, was one of three national finalists who recently competed in the last round of judging before Edwards renowned Chef Fritz and Chef Kit Kiefer, Corporate Executive Chefs for Schwan's Bakery, Inc., makers of Edwards desserts.

"Her creation was an innovative idea that could be served as a side dish and/or a dessert," explained Chef Kit. "Ease of preparation was really good. And there's a nice collision of textures."

As the Grand Prize winner Bonnie and a guest will be whisked away for a week-long, gourmet get-away at the CuisinArt Culinary Resort and Spa in Anguilla, British West Indies. When she's not flying, Bonnie enjoys horseback riding, gardening, traveling and cooking.

Other "Indulgence" finalists included: 2nd Place winner Susan Scarborough of Fernandina Beach, Fla., who chose Edwards Key Lime Pie Slices to develop "Temptational Key Lime Macaroon Pops" and 3rd Place winner Elise Lalor of Issaquah, Wash., who incorporated Edwards Key Lime Pie into her recipe for "Key Lime Tiramisu."

"We've received some fabulous recipes and we're very proud of the creativity that this event has inspired," said Melinda Pritchett, Edwards Brand Manager. "With creations such as these, it's clear that with Edwards, you don't need a lot of time or culinary experience to prepare quick and easy gourmet-quality desserts."

The Georgia-based Edwards, known for its best-selling Key Lime, Lemon Meringue and Georgia Pecan pies, sponsored the contest. The contest began April 15th and accepted entries of original recipes through July 8, 2005. The finalists arrived in Atlanta for a live, cook-off at the Schwan's Bakery Innovation Center where each contestant recreated her recipe and presented it for judging. Recipes were judged on ease of preparation, creativity, appearance, and taste.

"Unbelievable ideas," said Chef Fritz. "There was a separation of less than 10 points between the winners. Each finalist has a unique culinary skill."

Elise's Key Lime Tiramisu was an instant hit. Presented in martini glasses and garnished with dark chocolate shavings and raspberries, Elise is the consummate contestant. She wins, often. Married and the co-owner of a travel agency that specializes in Scandinavian and European destinations as well as adoption travel, Elise collects cookbooks as souvenirs.

"The Tiramisu has a very gourmet finish. It can be prepared in advance and can be out on the table when people come over to your home," said Chef Fritz.

"The martini glass brings it to a white tablecloth look. And it has an interesting combination of flavors," added Chef Kit. "To take an old-style technique, tiramisu, plus two heavy expressions – coffee flavor with key lime -- was fantastic."

Chef Fritz, formerly with Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel and Veni Vidi Vici restaurant in Atlanta, praised finalist Susan Scarborough for fashioning a dessert with opportunity. Married and the mother of four, Susan is a decorative artist and portrait artist. "She turned a regional Key Lime pie into a gourmet dessert," Chef Fritz explained. "And it eats great. These desserts are on trend." Chef Fritz has won medals in several national and European culinary competitions. He was named "Chef of the Year," "Culinarian of the Year," and "Culinary Educator of the Year" by the American Culinary Federation.

Five-star Chef Kit Kiefer, owner and founder of legendary Atlanta restaurant Kiefer's, has three First Place titles in International Cuisine, the Governor's Award, as well as numerous culinary medals. Chef Kit serves on the Board of the American Culinary Federation, is a culinary instructor, and is published in several leading magazines such as Southern Living and The National Culinary Review.

Edwards "Indulgence" contestants submitted recipes from across the United States. Entries were narrowed to 12 semi-finalists by an independent home economist and later to the three finalists.

In addition to the Grand Prize getaway, other prizes included: a product coupon entitling all entrants to a free, Edwards dessert and a $250 gift certificate to specialty retailer Williams-Sonoma. The three finalists also won an all-expense paid weekend in Atlanta to compete for the Grand Prize.

Winning desserts will be showcased in the upcoming 2005 Fall Edwards Quick & Easy Dessert booklet. Look for the free booklet at participating grocers and the great creations on the Edwards Web site http://www.edwardsbaking.com. Edwards desserts are available as whole pies and in two-slice packages. Flavors include the No.1 selling Key Lime, Lemon Meringue, Georgia Pecan, Turtle and OREO®, among others. Edwards gourmet desserts are found in grocer's freezers nationwide.

The Edwards Baking Company was founded in 1950 by namesake Tom Edwards as a small retail bakeshop in Atlanta. Now based in Suwanee, Georgia, Edwards desserts are sold by Schwan's Bakery, Inc. Schwan's Bakery is a division of The Schwan Food Company, a world-leading manufacturer, marketer and distributor of frozen foods.

Note: Photos Available Upon Request Electronically

Contact:    

Deb McGhee Speights

Veux Marketing, Inc.

404-975-4857 (Office)

404-871-8444 (Pager)

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