Cattlewomen host Beef Cookoff

Winners advance to compete at state level in Birmingham


ROBERTSDALE, Alabama — Middle and high school students from Baldwin County put their culinary skills to the test in a beef cookoff Thursday, March 25 at the South Baldwin Center for Technology’s Culinary Arts Academy in Robertsdale for a chance to advance to state competition.

Sponsored by the Baldwin County Cattlewomen’s Association, the first-place winner in each division received a cash prize and the chance to compete at the Alabama Junior/Senior High School Cookoff which will be held April 24 at Jeff State Community College in Birmingham.

Judges for the competition included:

  • Erin Childress Salyers is a third-generation owner/operator at Farm Fresh Meats in Robertsdale. Farm Fresh Meats specializes in 25 different sausages – house cured and smoked bacon, premium pork and poultry products along with the finest USDA Choice Prime Beef. Farm Fresh is in its 45th year of working alongside the agricultural industry and supporting our strong communities throughout Baldwin County.
  • Dawn Hopper serves as the Baldwin Cattlewomen's president and was named Cattlewomen of the Year 2021. She works closely with all the Family and Consumer Sciences Teachers who encouraged their students to participate in the annual beef cook-off.
  • Jonathon Perez is the manager of Longhorn Steakhouse in Daphne. Perez has worked in the food industry 15 years and enjoys the satisfaction of pleasing customer's with delicious cooked steaks met with perfection from his family of chef's and food servers at Longhorn.
  • Thomas Cotton and his wife Monica own Cotton Cattle Company in Fairhope. They run a cow/calf operation. Cotton also serves as a project manager for Thomas Construction, a local contractor in Fairhope.

“From farm to table, judges came and judged a variety of delicious dishes,” Hopper said.

A total of 15 students participated in the competition, five junior competitors (including one team) and 10 senior competitors.

Carrie Salter of Robertsdale High School placed first in the senior division, followed by Gabby Chaney of the South Baldwin Center for Technology, second; and Molly O’Neal, Elberta High, third.

Additional senior competitors were Ava Garner, Foley High; Dawson Estes, Lukas Hinman and Shelby Rivers, Spanish Fort High; Javi Simon, Elberta High; Libby Doane and Ceattle Snodgrass, South Baldwin Center for Technology.

Daniel Navarro of Daphne Middle placed first in the junior division, followed by Anthony Gonzales of Central Baldwin Middle, second; the team of Austin Harrison and Lake Peterson of Summerdale Middle, third; and Karyssa Cortez of Central Baldwin Middle.

“The Baldwin County Cattlewomen's Association enjoyed the morning and appreciate everyone that came out to help,” Hopper said. “Many of them also served as a judge for some of the FCCLA STAR events.

“Additional thanks to Chef Navarro and his students for their excellent help preparing lunch for all in attendance. Alyssa Patterson, FACS teacher at Elberta High School, coordinated the event and it was very successful. Again, congratulations to all the students who took part in showcasing their projects and representing their programs throughout schools in Baldwin County!”