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Books With Bite: Teen Iron Chef Program

October 27, 2008

I’m a little delinquent blogging about my Teen Read Week (TRW) program, but it was a good one so I thought I’d share it with all.  To tie in with the TRW theme Books with Bite, I had a Teen Iron Chef Program.  The basic format is below.  Feel free to adapt and use this concept for your library or teen event.  It was a wildly successful program at my library.  Participants, parents, and librarians were all happy with the outcome.  The Iron Chef was awarded with a fabric cooler and a copy of Brandon Mull’s Candy Shop War.

Teen Read Week:

Books With Bite

Teen Iron Chef Competition

Who’s cuisine reigns supreme?

Teens will compete in the ultimate snack competition.

Materials will be supplied.

The ultimate snack will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

1) Creativity/Originality – 5 points

2) Appearance/Presentation – 5 points

3) Taste – 10 points

*** Important: Please let me know before participating if you have any food allergies.  For example: nuts, chocolate, etc.  You can still participate, but please do not handle or eat the items you are allergic to.

Featured Books:

Cookbooks: Manga Cookbook, Teens Cook, Teens Cook Dessert, Real Food Real Fast (Found in non-fiction 641.5)

Fiction: Hope Was Here by Joan Bauer, Ala Carte by Tanita Davis, Girls Dinner Club by Jessie Elliot, Flavor of the Week by Tucker Shaw, My Scrumptious Scottish Dumplings by Cherry Whytock (Found in the YA Fiction Section)

Program Format:

1) Let me know if you have any food allergies.

2) Sign up to be a chef, judge, or the chairman.

3) Wash your hands.

4) Select your ingredients.  You can take one of each item, however everyone must have a chance at choosing an item before you get a second one.  NO HOARDING!  SHARING IS CARING.

5) You have 30 minutes to make your creation.

Remember you are being judged on taste, appearance, and creativity.  Judges have the right to not taste something they deem inedible.

6) Judging.

7) Iron Chef Awarded.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. October 28, 2008 12:48 am

    Hee! “Sharing is caring!”
    You have now won the prize for Most Cool Fun Librarian Ever. This must have been awesome! I love Iron Chef — the old ones, before Food Network got all into it — and I cracked up about your rule about judges not having to taste the inedible… That was… nice of you! I would go on the actual SHOW if they would keep to that rule!!! Wish you had pictures of the final dishes.

  2. October 28, 2008 4:49 am

    We actually did something similar to this this summer. We had 6 stations and the kids picked which dessert they wanted to make and then we chose a winner. We chose the banana pudding based on following directions and teamwork and it didn’t taste too bad either. But I was surprised by the teams and how much fun they had. We had these two high school football players making puppy chow and when they were shaking the powdered sugar in the ziplock bags, well, it exploded all over them. Good times. We did vampires for our TRW and it was HUGE! We packed our house Friday night (After Hours) for a vampire-themed Murder Mystery. And the Twilight Kids are still buzzing about how much fun Vampire Week was.

  3. Emily Chorno permalink
    October 28, 2008 5:08 am

    What a great idea! Anything involving food tends to bring teenagers to the library in droves. I’m curious as to how you paid for the food. Is it in the programming budget or coming from a friends group?

  4. Sarah permalink
    October 29, 2008 6:16 am

    What a fun idea! May be too late for my own library’s teen read week unfortunately but something to consider for some other programming opportunity this winter.

  5. Sarah permalink
    October 30, 2008 2:30 am

    Awesome. I was just telling some co-workers I want to do an Iron Chef program during summer reading club.

  6. alirambles permalink
    October 30, 2008 6:20 pm

    This sounds like so much fun!

  7. October 31, 2008 8:55 am

    What were the ingredients or choices you provided?

  8. Gayle permalink*
    November 11, 2008 7:34 pm

    Funding was from our local Friends. The program cost about $50, mainly for food items purchased from Costco. Paper good items I have laying around at home and in the staff room, good time to utilize stuff that’s getting older.

    Food items I let the kids choose from: peanut butter, nutella (both good for binding items), bananas, apples (non-threatening fruit), cheese and crackers, variety pack of candy (included Skittles, Snickers, Three Musketeers, and Starburst), I also had some rice crackers (a healthy option) and gummi creatures. In retrospect I’d ditch the rice crackers because they were too bland and not very popular and buy more gummi things because they were too short in supply. The fruit option did really well…the kids didn’t only choose candy.

    Nobody had a food allergy so I was lucky.

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