Cookbook marking 25th year

Published 5:00 am Monday, May 20, 2002

The countdown continues as recipes pile up for the DAILYLEADER’s 25th Annual Wooden Spoon Contest.

“This is a very special year for us. We’re celebrating 25wonderful years of the cookbook’s existence and getting to knowfabulous cooks throughout the southwest Mississippi area,” saidCassandra Johnson, Lifestyle editor. “There is no greateropportunity than cookbook time to get to know some of the cooks whomake life special for people in this area.”

The over $700 in cash to be given away in the contest is anotherincentive to draw area cooks to the contest.

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“We expect this to be one of the biggest years ever as far asour contest entries . . . not just for the money but for thedistinction of being part of our 25th anniversary edition,” saidJohnson. “With three weeks left in the contest, we’re alreadyseeing an influx in entries.”

In addition to cash prizes, many local merchants donate prizesto be given away during an awards ceremony when the contest ends.The deadline for submitting entries is Friday, June 7.

With individual category prizes of $50 each and a grand prize of$300, one person could walk away with all the cash, saidJohnson.

“However, it normally doesn’t turn out like that. The prizemoney and door prizes from area merchants are typically dividedamong some of the best cooks in this area,” she said.

Participants can choose to enter any one or all of sevencategories this year. Categories include: Appetizers; Soups, Saladsand Fruits; Main Dish; Vegetables; Desserts and Sweets; Breads andRolls; and For Your Health.

In its third year in the contest is a ‘Kids Kuisine’ categoryfor children ages 16 and under. This category was added to showcasethe culinary creations of youth in the area. From appetizers todesserts, youths are allowed to submit up to seven entries, one ineach food division from Appetizers to Main Dish to Breads andRolls.

“Every year participation has been growing and growing in thiscategory. We’re excited about the entries we’ve gotten so far andlook forward to getting many more before the deadline approaches,”said Johnson. “This is an opportunity for all those children whoare out for summer vacation to earn a little extra money.”

The winning entry in the category is also eligible to competeagainst top cooks for a chance at the grand prize.

Rules in the Kids Kuisine Category are the same as for otherentrants. However, contestants must be 16 and under. They can havehelp in writing the recipe but minimal supervision with preparingthe dish (if chosen as a finalist).

Youths are asked to specify that they are entering the KidsKuisine Category and include their age when submitting theirrecipes and entry forms.

The Wooden Spoon contest begins with readers submitting recipesto The DAILY LEADER to be examined by a panel of judges.

The recipes are then narrowed in each category and finalists arenotified to prepare their dish for a tasting. Following thetasting, category winners and a grand prize winner are chosen.

The contest is open to everyone in The DAILY LEADER/SOUTHWESTSHOPPING BAG circulation area, except for employees of The DAILYLEADER and their immediate families.

The maximum number of recipes accepted in the contest is 250, sothe earlier you get your recipes in, the better chance you have ofbeing included in the 25th annual edition.

The winner will be announced at a reception on Thursday, June27, and cookbooks will hit the stands on Friday, June 28. Allrecipes entered in the contest (up to the maximum 250) will beincluded in the cookbook.

Rules for the contest include:

* Recipe must be typed or legibly written on one side of an 81/2 x 11 inch sheet of paper (no index cards).

* In case of duplicate entries, the entry with the earliestpostmark or date of receipt will be considered.

* List ingredients first, then the method of combining. Includethe amount or number of servings. Avoid using brand nameproducts.

* Each recipe must be accompanied by the coupon or a photo copyof the coupon.

* Late, illegible or incomplete entries will bedisqualified.

Each finalist will be notified and required to prepare his/herdish on a specific day and time.