The four winning students hold a large check for $10,000 from Harper College. Next to the students are a representative from District 214 and Senator Gillespie.

L-R: Laz Lopez, District 214 interim superintendent; Bake-Off winners Adam Chamala, Jonathan Alvarado, Alejandro Pons Jurado and Samantha Rowan; and State Senator Ann Gillespie.

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS — Students enrolled in District 214’s Culinary Arts ProStart Career Pathway rose to the challenge as they baked sweet and savory breads during State Senator Ann Gillespie’s second annual Great District 214 Culinary Competition Bake-Off on Thursday.

“I am so impressed with the talent and creativity students displayed this year,” said Gillespie (D-Arlington Heights). “Congratulations to our winners; I know you will be successful as you continue your culinary journey.”

Teams from Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove and Rolling Meadows high schools competed in savory and sweet categories. The winning dishes, both from Elk Grove High School teams, were jalapeño popper monkey bread from Alejandro Pons Jurado and Jonathan Alvarado in the savory category, and caramel macchiato cream cheese muffins from Samantha Rowan and Adam Chamala in the sweet category. The students will each receive scholarship funds to attend Harper College.

Five of the Bake-Off judges smile for a photo.

Dishes were evaluated by a panel of judges that included Gillespie; Grace Goudie, executive chef at Scratchboard Kitchen; Heather Henkel, manager/confectioner at Kilwin’s; Charlie Brown, executive chef at The Moorings; and Brian Baseggio, chef at The Makerplace, Arlington Heights Memorial Library.

The Bake-Off was held in Arlington Heights Memorial Library’s Makerplace facility in partnership with Township High School District 214, Harper College, Arlington Heights Memorial Library and the Arlington Heights Chamber of Commerce.

View video from the Bake-Off.