Fri | Jun 18, 2021

Sagicor dishes gourmet meals on a budget

Create healthy options at home with as little as $1,000

Published:Thursday | May 6, 2021 | 12:17 AMKrysta Anderson /Staff Reporter
Local Chef Jermaine Wedderburn of Jerry’s Jerk Joint brought the heat at the recent Sagicor Pro-Millennial Mentorship Society’s ‘Budget Bites: Gourmet Cook-Off’. He shared with the online audience of over 300 in attendance how easy it is to create
Local Chef Jermaine Wedderburn of Jerry’s Jerk Joint brought the heat at the recent Sagicor Pro-Millennial Mentorship Society’s ‘Budget Bites: Gourmet Cook-Off’. He shared with the online audience of over 300 in attendance how easy it is to create nutritious meals under budget and in little time.

The new normal has inspired many to become budding chefs, but this doesn’t stop the busy millennial, working from home, from falling prey to convenience. This often leads to ordering take-out, which can be costly. So, how does one create their desired gourmet dishes on a budget? Sagicor’s Pro Millennial Mentorship Society made itself part of the solution by continuing its efforts to prepare the company’s youth for any crisis, even with food.

Recently hosting the ‘Budget Bites: Gourmet Cook-Off’ event, 300 team members were invited via Zoom to learn how to prepare quick, easy, healthy and budget-friendly meals with the help of local chef Jermaine Wedderburn of Jerry’s Jerk Joint. There, he shared recipes and grocery shopping ideas to help persons create healthy meals at home with as little as $1,000. But first, those in attendance indulge in a sizzling virtual in-house matchup.

Stepping up to the chef’s plate were Chantel Taylor, quality assurance and internal controls officer, Finance Department, Sagicor Group, and Tahlia Hyman-Fyffe, escalation associate, Group Client Contact Centre. Their task was to create a surprise dish, chicken chop suey, in less than 30 minutes. Guided by Chef Wedderburn, each competitor was restricted to using the ingredients that were within the budget; only then would the two be able to bring that gastronomic masterpiece to life.

In the end, Hyman-Fyffe’s dish catered to a healthier palate, sans the salt, and Taylor opted for a well-seasoned dish, loaded with local herbs and spices. Both the overseeing chef and the event host, Frankene Brooks, president of the society, had a warm time deciding on a winner, since both did extremely well.

Following the culinary contender segment, Chef Wedderburn kept the edutainment going with a live demonstration of two additional budget-friendly dishes. He continued down the Asian path with sweet and sour chicken for the poultry lovers and creamy coconut curried chickpeas for the vegetarians.

krysta.anderson@gleanerjm.com

Chef Wedderburn disclosed a few friendly tips on how to make great meals under or within your budget:

1. Choose farm-fresh ingredients – visit the market or your local farmer’s market.

2. Don’t just think about the brand name products; go for quality as well.

3. To extend the flavour and serving of meals, add vegetables: Use local spices to bring life to canned options; be creative, use what you have in the house and experiment with food. Try in small portions and build your skills from there.

4. For people with children looking to get them on a healthier path, add fruits to vegetables. If you’re a fan of dressing your salad, use simple ingredients like honey and lime for a light but wholesomely sweet experience.