The Cowboy Chef’s Table luncheon series, which had a successful inaugural year, will return with a second season beginning this October with a new format and new guest chefs.
The series’ first luncheon begins Tuesday, Oct. 9, at noon with not one, but two chefs preparing dishes for attendees in the State Room.
In the first series, guest chefs were invited to create a lunch menu and work directly with the School of Culinary Arts students to prepare their menu’s dishes. The guest chef would do a live cooking demonstration of that day’s meal and talk about their culinary styles to luncheon patrons.
Proceeds from the first series raised close to $13,000 for the Culinary scholarship fund.
“It was beyond my expectations,” said School of Culinary Arts Dean Gene Leiterman. “That was the whole goal, to raise money for scholarships and that number far exceeded what we were expecting.”
That goal hasn’t changed for the series’ second year, but the format will be somewhat different for those who attend the luncheons.
There will be four luncheons throughout the 2018-19 school year, with two chefs doing their take on a classic American dish at each event.
On Oct. 9, Chef Alex Pierce, the new executive chef at Southern Hills Country Club, will be paired up with Chef Miranda Kaiser, executive chef of Tulsa restaurant Laffa, to create their culinary take on barbecue.
“I’m excited to see their versions of barbecue,” Leiterman said, and each chef will create one entrée plate, so each guest will get two small entrée plates. “They may have opposite culinary viewpoints, but they will create some interesting interpretations.”
Future luncheons will tackle fried chicken, meatloaf and tacos.
“We kept getting questions from the chefs ‘What are the rules, the guidelines?’ You get a white plate and you create something that represents your style,” he said.
Each luncheon begins at noon and the cost will be $20 per person. Three of the four luncheons will take place in the State Room on the OSUIT campus and one will be held at the new Mother Road Market in Tulsa.
The second series is sponsored by Ben E. Keith and U.S. Foods with Mother Road Market also partnering up to sponsor the third luncheon held at their location.
The luncheons will also incorporate more technology with additional monitors set up so guests can really see the guest chefs’ process while cooking.
Leiterman said he’s excited by the interest he is getting from chefs about participating in the series. He’s also happy to see how the students are benefitting from working with so many successful chefs from all areas of the industry.
Some are now working with these chefs during their internships and in the industry after graduation,” he said.
Promoting diversity, both in guest chefs and areas of the culinary industry, was a goal for this second series, Leiterman said.
“Three out of the eight chefs are females,” he said. “We always tell our students there are different opportunities in the industry. There are a lot of different kinds of chefs and they get to see that through the Cowboy Chef’s Table.”
2018-19 Cowboy Chef’s Table
Oct. 9 Barbecue
Chef Alex Pierce, executive chef Southern Hills Country Club
Chef Miranda Kaiser, executive chef Laffa
Dec. 4 Fried Chicken
Chef Dustin Woods, banquet chef at Big Cedar Lodge in Branson, Missouri
Chef Libby Billings, owner of Elote Café, the Vault and Roppongi restaurants in downtown Tulsa
Feb. 5 Tacos
Chef Lorenzo Quiambao, executive chef of Guckenheimer at the Google complex in Pryor
Chef Kirby Swaby, general manager of culinary services at Gathering Place in Tulsa
Mother Road Market, 1124 S. Lewis Ave., in Tulsa
April 9 Meatloaf
Chef Jennifer Booker, cookbook author and owner of catering and personal chef company Your Resident Gourmet
Chef Rob Johnson, executive chef with US Foods and Food Fanatics chef