Bala Cynwyd scholar cooks up a treat

November 4, 2013 by  

Leo Shack, a fifth grader at Lower Merion Elementary School, near Bala Cynwyd, is hoping for success as he participates in Ben’s Beginners – a national cooking contest for young people.

The contest is sponsored by the Food Network and Uncle Ben’s rice. To participate in the contest, Shack and others had to submit a video in which they demonstrate how to prepare a dish using rice as a component.

Shack’s video shows him preparing a chicken and mushroom risotto, which is no easy feat for a video that needed to be less than three minutes in lenght. Risotto typically takes about half an hour to prepare. Although his mother helped him with filming, Shack was on his own to get the video edited down to the required length before submitting it.

Initial voting for the contest took place throughout October. Three finalists will be chosen and are expected to travel to New York City, to be filmed for the ‘Rachael Ray Show’. Voting on the finalists will begin on November 18.

Whether Leo Shack makes it to the finals or not, he has undoubtedly achieved a lot in making the video. His school could therefore perhaps consider hiring stationery printers to create a certificate recognizing his efforts.

The winner of the Ben’s Beginners contest will receive $15,000. The contest also included a school category, which was divided into small, medium, and large. Winners in that group each received $30,000 to renovate the school’s cafeteria.