Special to the Fort Mill Times
Popcorn and pixie sticks never looked so good.
As they raced to the table to collect their ingredients, the Teen Iron Chef competitors had to be creative.
The competition was held Tuesday at the York County Public Library. Fort Mill students gathered at the library to put their cooking skills to the test.
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Best friends Juliana and Alizabeth Bahrenburg, Abby Cripe and Cecilia Fetters faced off in the competition.
“I can kick Abby’s butt,” 13-year-old Juliana said.
Alizabeth, 12, joined the competition to enjoy what she loves.
“I like to cook,” she said. “I can just make something.”
Each of the friends are homeschooled in Fort Mill.
Fort Mill student Michael Hipp, 11, rooted for his brother William, 14.
“The art of cooking is a good way to express one’s feelings,” he said. “Everyone had fun.”
The end of the competition was also fun for Hipp.
“We got to take stuff home that tastes good,” he said.
Each dish had to use a mystery ingredient: sweet pickles for the appetizer, popcorn for the entrée and pixie sticks for dessert. The dishes were judged based on three merits. Competitors were judged on the cleanliness of the their work station and ingredient table and their creativity, Youth Services Librarian Bethany Fetzer said.
“I want to see things I’ve never seen before,” she said.
The dishes were also judged on presentation.
“You eat with your eyes, not your mouth,” Fetzer said.
The best recipe won. Rylee Venterve, 14, took home the prize, a $10 Starbucks gift card.
“I thought I had a pretty good chance of winning,” she said. “I thought I was creative.”
Venterve said she often cooks and bakes at home.
The program is part of the library's Young Adult Services Program, which serves students 12 to 18 years old, Fetzer said. She said it’s harder to get teenagers in the library these days.
“The program gets kids in the library and gives them a place to hang out,” she said. “[The students] are always happy they come.”
For information on upcoming programs, visit yclibrary.org.