Fried food on a stick isn't the only foodie favorite at the 2018 Iowa State Fair.
On Monday, fairgoers sampled original soft silken tofu-based salad dressing creations from four professional chefs. Crowds watched each chef make and discuss their dressings in front of a panel of professional judges.
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The competing chefs were challenged to make salad dressing recipes which used Mori-nu Soft Silken Tofu as the base of the dressing, were consumer friendly, gluten-free and delicious enough to put on a restaurant menu.
This year's champion is Chef George Migliero from G Migs 5th Street Pub in Valley Junction, West Des Moines. Migliero took home the gold with an orange walnut tofu dressing over a mixed local greens salad.
Other competing chefs included:
2nd Place: Chef Jessi Dolson of Barley's Bar & Grill in Council Bluffs — Orange ginger soy shrimp salad
3rd Place: Tyler Kubiak of Hy-Vee Market Grille in Waukee — Lemon mint tofu dressing
4th Place: Chef Joe McConnville of Gusto Pizza in Des Moines — Creamy pesto with balsamic
All participants received cash prizes.
The competition was hosted by the Iowa Restaurant Association and The Soyfoods Council, an affiliate of the Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Restaurant Association. It was held in the Agriculture Building on the Iowa State Fairgrounds.
Each chef demonstrated the process of making the dressing and then served four judges as well as a crowd of fairgoers.
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Contest judges included soy producer and Iowa Soybean Association board member Jeff Frank, food blogger Cristin Clark with Food & Swine, reporter Ben Oldach with WHO-TV 13 and chef John Andres with the Iowa Culinary Institute.
Last year's winner was Tag Grandgeorge of Le Jardin in Des Moines for his sesame ginger tofu dressing.