ALBERTA — Asian-inspired dishes created by three NAIT Culinary Arts students will be sold in grocery and convenience stores across Alberta as part of the Edmonton-based Tokyo Express’ Tetsu Chef line of products.
This comes after a December product innovation competition held in collaboration with NAIT and Tokyo Express.
During the contest 10 NAIT chefs-in-training had four hours to prepare dishes, which were cooled, microwaved (in the case of entrées) and presented to a panel of judges. Tracy Phan’s orange chicken dish was named best overall. Other winners included runner-up, Marshall Bell (Asian coleslaw) and second runner-up, Nick Thompson (Asian pasta salad). Each winner received $500 and will have their names included on the packaging in stores. A bonus $500 was awarded to Phan for preparing the Best Overall Dish.
“We were very impressed but not at all surprised by the quality of the recipes and the dishes,” said Dean Belanger, Tokyo Express business manager. “There were several unique and innovative ideas that came forward. We’sre very happy the students embraced the concept of what we were trying to achieve.”
Tetsu Chef is a line of Asian cuisine, including a variety of heat-and-serve entrées and noodle salads sold at retail outlets. The Tokyo Express Group owns and operates 16 restaurants and a 20,000 square-foot commissary in Edmonton.