Cooking challenge, food contests, name it. These are all over the metro nowadays. This is one of the most exciting activities done almost everywhere. I have always been anxious to be able to witness how other people prepares and cook their food and then try it myself at home. Haha! Recently, I was able to do this in the Iron Bar Chef.
Iron Bar Chef is about a group of talented prisoners, inmates, in a Philippine prison. This is the latest recreational effort at the largest prison in the Philippines. Being inspired by reality TV cooking show – Iron Chef, Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) ‘s version have six (6) teams with four (4) members each against each other, tasking them to create as many menus as they can from their “mystery bayong” in an hour. Mystery bayong will have all the ingredients that they will be cooking which they all didn’t have any idea on what will they be.
I was lucky to be pat of this event. Held last June 16, 2012 at BuCor’s Meduim Security Compound. We were warmly welcomed by OIC Geraldo Aro and had a quick discussion with him on the on-going and future plans for the reformative and restorative programs for the inmates.
This event is just one of the wide-range of reformative and restorative programs that aims not only to reform inmates but also cultivate their skills and prepare them or a possible return to the “outside world”.
It was really good to see inmates from different groups worked together. From Sputnik to Batman, their differences didn’t prevent them to get their goal. I was able to witness their excitement while preparing their menu. Another discovery was that some of them were actually a professional cook from hotels and resorts. Their way of preparing food were amazing. Some of them even used a blender to mix their ingredients for their sauce. 🙂
With their family and loved ones watching them, they were really determined to win this challenge.
And the winners are:
The Top 3 Teams of this event in the Medium Security compound will compete with the winners from the Maximum Security compound which will be the Grand Finals and will be held on June 30, 2012.
It was a real fun and full of excitement event. I was one of those who were cheering for the winners. I must say, I enjoyed this visit. Saw the inmates’ children running all over the place, cheering for their Dads, the happiness in their eyes looking at their fathers being interviewed and photos taken – this event not just for the inmates, but this also keeps their bonds with the family.
Good luck to the winners on the final challenge. I am a firm believer that you guys all deserves a tap in the back, a sincere congratulatory message for a job well done. Regardless of your past, I, personally learned a lot from those short discussions with you. Your words of wisdom will truly touch everyone’s heart. Everyone deserves a second chance. 🙂