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Osuna wins bread division, Counce bakes best dessert

February 01, 2001|By DORA DEPAOLI, Staff Writer

HOLTVILLE — Local elementary school teacher Shelly Osuna took first place in the Carrot Festival bread division with "Slice of Carrot Bread" on Wednesday during this city's annual cooking contest featuring carrot concoctions.

Osuna found the recipe after spending an hour searching on the Internet. Osuna said she didn't find too many carrot recipes posted. The tasty creation she did find calls for 19 ingredients and makes two loaves. She served it with a butter, cream cheese and vanilla spread.

Angela Marlow of Holtville placed second with "Delectable Carrot Muffins." Her grandmother Clara Gutierrez gave her the recipe. Marlow, a busy mother of three, enjoys trying new recipes and entering cooking contests. She has instilled the joy of competition in her three daughters, who are proficient cooks and frequent contest finalists.

Sylvia Golby of Cher Hill, Alberta, Canada, took third place with "Carrot Raisin Quick Bread." The original recipe was for scones and called for the use of sweet potatoes. As with many experienced cooks, Sylvia doesn't bat an eye as she switches and adds ingredients. She thought her bread would have done better if she had a better oven. The oven in her trailer is much too small, she said, adding she frequently "burns things."

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The judges had a tough time picking a first-place dessert winner from nine delectable entries. After much deliberation, Karol Counce of El Centro was given the top prize with "Mandarin Orange Carrot Cake." Counce said she created the recipe for lactose-intolerant senior citizens. Four cups of shredded carrots and the Mandarin oranges give the cake its moisture.

Former Sweepstakes winner Margarita Bernardi took second place with "Praline Carrot Cake." The cake was topped with a cinnamon and cream cheese frosting.

Another cake was baked by Mona Locher of El Centro. The third-place finisher thinks her cake was unique because she "spruced it up" with chopped mixed nuts instead of the customary pecans most cooks use in their carrot cakes. She named it "Special Carrot Cake."

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All three of the miscellaneous division winners were finalists in other categories.

"Carrot Artichoke Munchies" nabbed the top prize in the miscellaneous division for Angela Marlow. The basic recipe came from a Pampered Chef cookbook and is something she frequently fixes. She mixed carrots, artichoke hearts, bell pepper and spices and spooned a tablespoon of carrot mixture onto won ton wrappers.

Mona Locher took second place with "Asian Style Chicken Noodle Soup." She found the recipe in the Los Angeles Times and followed it closely, with the exception of the recommended mushrooms that were unavailable. She used a blend of dried mushrooms instead and transparent bean thread noodles.

Karla Counce said her "Carrot Carnival Popcorn," which won third place, was a last-minute entry.

"I thought, what would no one else make? I thought of popcorn, my favorite snack," Counce said. The recipe ingredients includes carrots, pecans, coconut, brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, baking soda and vanilla.

Judges for the contests were Andara Macdonald, Paula Daniels, Helina Hoyt, Kim Garcia, Madge Widman, Gabe Gularte, Ozetta Maggard, Heidi Schaffner and Bernadine Macdonald.

All first- and second-place finishers in the adult divisions will compete in the sweepstakes Friday night at the Holtville High School Home Economics room.

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