Last Monday, the Pines Manor in Edison was the place to be.
The annual Cooked and Uncorked event was back in action, hosted by the New Jersey Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association (FMBA). Proceeds from the event are donated in part to the FMBA and to the Burn Center at St. Barnabas.
In It to Win It
Arriving ready to impress, the burning question on these firefighters’ minds was who among them would win the trophy for best gourmet cooking, best firehouse cooking, and best dessert.
About 25 departments participated. The dishes they prepared ranged from firehouse chili to chicken and waffles, arancini to ravioli, and tacos to smoked pork belly bruschetta.
Dessert did not disappoint. Selections included chocolatey cupcakes, passion fruit parfaits, a Snickers cheesecake pie, and more.
The firefighters displayed their entrees to the judges, who then tasted every dish entered. The judging panel included chefs, food writers, and former pro athletes.
The Big Winners
- 1st: East Orange Firefighters and Dispatchers—Short rib arancini with herb ricotta marinara
- 2nd: Elizabeth Firefighters—Braised short rib ravioli
- 3rd: Bayonne Firefighters—Chorizo, shrimp, and scallop street tacos
- 1st: Morristown Firefighters–Passion fruit pleasure parfait
- 2nd: NJ FMBA Retirees—Love Me Tender tart
- 1st: Paterson Firefighters—Chicken and waffles with sriracha honey butter
- 2nd: Harrison Firefighters—Firehouse chili with jalapeño cornbread
- 3rd: Union Firefighters—Smoked pork belly bruschetta with Thai chili sauce
- Gourmet: East Orange Firefighters and Dispatchers—Short rib arancini with herb ricotta marinara
- Dessert: Linden Firefighters Pinto Pie—Snickers cheesecake with Oreo crust
- Firehouse: Paterson Firefighters—Chicken and waffles with sriracha honey butter
Not only did the attendees get to sample all the firehouse offerings, but a variety of restaurants served their favorite fare as well, including lamb chops, paella, and mini gourmet doughnuts, fresh from the fryer.
A wide selection of samples of wines, beers, and spirits added to the experience.
Pictured at top: New Brunswick’s entry.