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The meals were cooked, the cocktails stirred and the pastries baked. The judges scored every detail of the "Taste of the Caribbean" culinary competition that led to The Bahamas picking up a bunch of medals with Chef Sheldon Tracey Sweeting leading the way picking up a gold medal at the recent regional competition in Florida.
Sweeting presented the judges with chocolate with Caribbean flavors in white, dark chocolate, lime and passion fruit Bavarian, banana ice cream, caramel, white chocolate, cream cheese, ganache, chocolate cake, spiced mango sauce, ginger pudding, buttered chocolate rumble, cinnamon tuille. His dessert was given a perfect score.
"It feels good," said Sweeting of the win. "It was six months of hard work, a lot of trial and error and refinement," he said. "I just wanted to make our country proud with it being our 40th anniversary."
The gold medal haul for The Bahamas amounted to four -- the Caribbean national team segment, culinary student, Dwayne Sinclair's gold medal in the junior chef of the year category and Jamal Small's gold medal and the win in the beef competition, along with Sweeting's pastry gold.
The team returned home with three silver medals --Emmanuel Gibson in the chef of the year contest; Charon McKenzie in the bartender of the year competition; and Ron Johnson in the cheesecake competition.
Three bronze medals were also in the haul, from Ancilleno Solomon in the ice carving competition; Ron Johnson in the seafood competition and a team bronze in the mystery basket rum competition.
The Bahamas also won the best use of chocolate award and the Tony Mack Spirit of the Competition award.
"We cleaned up a lot of awards. I thought we were going to win," said Sweeting. He said this year's results were the best by a Bahamian team in the 27-year history of the competition.
Barbados was crowned Caribbean Culinary Team of the Year. The highest individual honors were bestowed upon Jamaican Brian Lumley (Caribbean Chef of the Year); Puerto Rico's Roberto Rodriguez (Caribbean Bartender of the Year); Sweeting (Caribbean Pastry Chef of the Year) and Trinidad & Tobago's Naomi Lovell (Caribbean Junior Chef of the Year).
The competition was held at the Hyatt Regency in Miami.
The list of winners
Winner -- Barbados
Gold medals -- Bahamas, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago
Silver medals -- Anguilla, Curacao, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Suriname, USVI
Bronze medals -- Bonaire
Chef of the year
Winner -- Brian Lumley, Jamaica
Gold medal -- Brian Lumley, Jamaica
Silver medals -- Lester Gumbs, Anguilla; Emmanuel Gibson, Bahamas; Andre Nurse, Barbados; Adriyel Lourens, Curacao; Joel Rodriguez, Puerto Rico; Jethro Daniel Wirth, Suriname; and Dennis Vanterpool, USVI.
Bronze medals -- Robertico Bernabela, Bonaire; Jeremy Lovell, Trinidad & Tobago
Bartender of the year
Winner -- Puerto Rico
Gold medals -- Roberto Rodriguez, Puerto Rico; Clinton Ramdhan, Trinidad & Tobago; Brandon DeCloux, USVI.
Silver medals -- Levon Richardson, Anguilla, Charon McKenzie, Bahamas, Rohan Hackshaw, Barbados, Tarimar Thom, Bonaire, Glenn Kemp, Curacao, Melissa Fletcher, Jamaica and Michel Marlon Blackson, Suriname.
Pastry chef of the year
Winner -- Sheldon Tracey Sweeting, Bahamas
Gold medals -- Sheldon Tracey Sweeting, Bahamas; Eric "Bernie" Burrell III, USVI
Silver medals -- Lashaunda Davis, Anguilla; Julian Broome, Barbados; Pablo Colon, Puerto Rico and Cheryl-Ann Shortt Charles, Trinidad & Tobago.
Bronze medals -- Lincoln Peterkin, Jamaica; Giovanni Ismael Asmo, Suriname.
Honorary mention -- Junior Janga, Bonaire; Carlos Anthonij, Curacao
Junior chef of the year
Winner -- Naomi Lovell, Trinidad & Tobago
Gold medals -- Dwayne Sinclair, Bahamas; Javon Cummins, Barbados, Naomi Lovell, Trinidad & Tobago
Silver medals -- Mtima Daniels, Anguilla, Ashohary Juliana, Curacoa; Jay Samuda-Thomas, Jamaica; Julio Lamberty, Puerto Rico; Vanina Candes Tjon a Tjoen, Suriname
Bronze medals -- Giovannie Veld, Bonaire; Ilejah Crabbe, USVI
Ice carving competition
Silver medal and ice carver of the year -- Hamac Palms, Jamaica
Bronze medals -- Ancilleno Solomon, Bahamas; Dwight Cross, Jamaica
Winner -- Nathan Crichlow, Barbados; Sherwin Alexander, Suriname
Silver medals -- Laureen Anique Perkins, Anguilla; Gian Stewart, Jamaica; Rochelle Grindley, Jamaica; Jeremy Lovell, Trinidad & Tobago
Bronze medals -- Ron Johnson, Bahamas; Shanot Ocalia, Curacao; Joel Rodriguez, Puerto Rico; Gary Klinefelter,USVI
Gold medal and winner -- Jamal Small, Bahamas
Silver medals -- Kenneth Whittington, Barbados; Adriyel Lourens, Curacao; Randy O'Brien Smith, Suriname; Adrian Cumberbatch, Trinidad & Tobago; Dennis Vanterpool, USVI.
Bronze medals -- Claudio Gumbs, Anguilla; Dwight Cross, Jamaica; Angel Santiago, Puerto Rico
Rums of Puerto Rico Mystery Basket Competition
Gold medals -- Puerto Rico; USVI
Silver medals -- Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago, USVI
Bronze medals -- Anguilla, Bahamas, Bonaire, Curacao, Jamaica, Suriname
Winner -- Teresa Clarke, Jamaica
Gold medals -- Carlos Antonij, Curacao; Teresa Clarke, Jamaica; Pablo Colon, Puerto Rico; Janelle Olliviere, Trinidad & Tobago
Silver medals -- Ron Johnson, Bahamas; Julian Broome, Barbados; Michael Harrison, Barbados; Rochelle Grindley, Jamaica
Bronze medals -- Giovanni Asmo, Suriname; George Sittig,USVI
Honorary mention -- Norison Conquet, Bonaire
Taste of the islands -- Best team
Winner -- Trinidad & Tobago
Taste of the islands -- People's choice
Winner -- Puerto Rico
Best use of chocolate
Winner -- Bahamas (Chocolate with Caribbean flavors) -- white, dark chocolate, lime and passion fruit Bavarian, banana ice cream, caramel, white chocolate, cream cheese, ganache, chocolate cake, spiced mango sauce, ginger pudding, buttered chocolate rumble, cinnamon tuile)
Best use of Certified Angus Beef
Winner -- Nathan Chriclow
Hans Schenck Commemorative Award for Most Innovative Menu Utilizing Indigenous Ingredients
Winner -- Bonaire (Fresh mango mousse topped carrot cake served with candied red pepper and spicy smoked mango salad, red pepper paint and cocoa tulle sticks)
Most Impressive/Creative Menu for a Gastronomy Event
Winner -- Anguilla
Best vodka drink
Winner -- Trinidad & Tobago
Best non-alcoholic drink
Winner -- Puerto Rico
Most Creative Cocktail
Winner -- Chutney Bacchanal, Barbados
Tony Mack Spirit of the Competition
Winner -- Bahamas
The Bahamas has an enviable reputation for its chilled attitude to life -- making it the ideal holiday destination. However, it's hard not to be anxious due to the global recession, and being a manager is always a stressful occupation.
In his new book "How Not To Worry", Paul McGee aims to eradicate our anxiety and stop us worrying, using his expertise as a psychologist and experience from working for public and private sector organizations, including Glaxo-Smith Kline and National Health Service.
"How Not To Worry" is a concise, humorous and common sense manual to help those poor humans who seem programmed to worry. The author explores the nature of worry, ways to reduce it and why it can sometimes be helpful. The book is split into two sections that utilize McGee's "SUMO" (Shut Up, Move On) format and introduces a new philosophy: "Stop, Understand, Move On".
In section one, we are told to 'Stop, Understand' and challenge our worries to reduce anxiety, or we risk worry becoming our default setting. Then, in section two, McGee examines why we worry, exploring a range of factors such as a lack of influence over change, wallowing in worry and overexposure to "bad news". He shows us how to use a certain degree of worry to spur us on towards constructive action and leave the anxiety behind.
Helpful suggestions to manage worry include making your environment friendly, preparing for impending change, diet, exercise, avoid people who 'escalate' bad news, have realistic expectations, organize and prioritize. This is underpinned by his "Triple A" strategy that includes:
o Awareness about your worries, what are you worrying about.
o Analyze your worries to understand what is within your control.
o Action to address them.
The vital questions are: where is this issue on the scale of one to 10? And how important will it be in six months? There are two types of worry: one that motivates you into taking remedial action and worthless worry about something that might never happen.
Each chapter concludes with a summary of key points, supported with amusing anecdotes and exercises to help us deal with nagging worries. However, this is not therapy and for those requiring professional support other resources are cited.
"How Not To Worry" will appeal to anyone concerned about the increase in work-related stress, absenteeism and wants to contribute to a well-being culture within their organization, protecting that priceless relaxed Caribbean spirit.
o 'How Not To Worry' by Paul McGee
Published Capstone by and available from www.Amazon.com
o Keith Appleton JP, BA (Hons), N.Dip.M, MInstLM has extensive experience within an academic, managerial and strategic leadership role. He is a member of the UK Institute of Leadership & Management and can be contacted at KeithAppleton@Hotmail.co.uk
Shaun Munnings is just 49 years old, but she's already had the photographs taken that she wants to be used for her obituary. After being diagnosed with lupus two years ago, she took the photographs because she says she knows that tomorrow is not promised to her.
"People get upset when I talk about death, but I tell them I'm not promised tomorrow, and with lupus, I could die this afternoon from the complications -- that's just how it is."
Munnings has suffered through misdiagnosis after misdiagnosis in her life, going as far back as her childhood when she said would indiscriminately break out in sores and swell up and would be treated for allergies. In her adult years, the trend pretty much continued -- misdiagnosis after misdiagnosis -- from spinal arthritis to one doctor telling her she needed to have surgery. And don't even think about the many different types of medications she's been prescribed over the years. When her mother died in 2007 it all came to a head.
"Everything pretty much went out of control because I was stressed out about my mother's death and grieving. I lost a lot of weight. I had rashes. I had sores in my mouth, and I was extremely tired...not the 'oh, I had a hard day' kind of tired; it was like, 'I can't move my body'. It was like my brain was telling my limbs to move, but it just wasn't working," said Munnings.
As in the past, she sought medical help.
"When the doctor asked me what part of me did I not feel pain, I said my eyelashes and my hair. Just to move to try to shift my body to get into a comfortable position, that was pure pain. Having the sheets touch me was pure pain. My body felt like it was on fire. I got to the point where I could not move and I was having pains in my chest like I was having a heart attack," she said. "I knew it wasn't a stroke because I felt the pain." Through it all she said the fatigue was extreme. "I was so tired that sometimes I would have to lift my legs to get into the tub and on a few occasions would end up being stuck in the tub because I could not get back out. My body wouldn't work for me to lift it over the tub."
After seeing too many doctors to count, Munnings finally found a medic who noticed the rash on her face and told her it looked like the malar rash also called the butterfly rash. It meant that Munnings could have lupus. After a battery of tests, Munnings was finally diagnosed in the latter part of 2011.
Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs when the body's immune system attacks its own tissues and organs. It can be difficult to diagnose because its signs and symptoms often mimic those of other ailments. The most distinctive sign of lupus is the facial rash that resembles the wings of a butterfly unfolding across both cheeks. Some people are born with a tendency toward developing lupus, which could be triggered by infections, certain drugs or even sunlight. While there's no cure for lupus, treatments can help control symptoms. It's important to remember that no two cases are exactly alike.
Munnings said she felt relieved at finally being diagnosed correctly, especially after the frustration she felt when she knew something was wrong with her, but people kept telling her that it was all in her mind.
"I know lupus can be difficult to diagnose, but when you know something is wrong and people are telling you it's all in your mind, it can get frustrating," she said.
Having lupus she said also made her realize just how strong she is and what she can deal with. That's why she said she had the strength to have the pictures taken that she wants to use for her obituary. As for plans, that's the only one she says she can make, as she does not know how she will feel each hour or each day, so she makes no other plans.
"I can't plan ahead. If you want to invite me somewhere I can't tell you, 'yes I will be there', or 'I will not be there'. When I first started the medication after I was diagnosed, a week later I was like, 'yes, I'm back'. I'm a person who is used to doing things for myself...I like to work in my yard, and if anything needs to be fixed I'm going to try it myself, and if I can't do it then I call someone else. The medication was working very well for me and I felt like the old me, so I started cleaning the house from top to bottom. Cleaned the swimming pool, went swimming. Later on that night, I could not move. I [lay] in the bed and I cried. I called the doctor who said that I needed to remember that the woman I was, was gone."
It was after that that she realized she had to take each second and each hour at a time.
"Yes someone could walk outside and get struck by a bus, and their life is over. But with us, it's like, 'do I have the next second, do I have the next minute, do I have the next five minutes'."
She has a handicapped sticker for her car that allows her to park in handicapped parking spaces. When she started feeling good again, she removed it from the window of her car; the doctor told her to leave it up, because she may walk into a store but might not be able to leave without someone carrying her out.
"I just take one day at a time, and through prayer all things are possible," she said. "Right now I'm feeling good, but about two weeks ago I was like, 'Oh, Lord I'm ready to meet you'. When I first started out, I told the doctor...you know what it is for a person who knows that she serves a happy God to be praying to him -- the God of life -- to die."
The mother of a 23-year-old son said that while she may only have been diagnosed in the last two years, when doctors went back through her medical history, they noticed that she showed lupus traits during her pregnancy, going as far back as her childhood sickliness that left everyone wondering what was wrong with her.
Munnings, who works in accounting, said her employer has been understanding of her struggles over the years and has worked with her. When she can't get into the office, they allow her to call in from home.
Even though she has insurance through work, she says lupus has also hit her hard in the pockets. She has to spend at least $600 per month out of pocket for medications and doctor's visits.
Munnings who is a member of Lupus Bahamas 242 also credits the group with helping her to get through.
"What people don't realize is that while we try to keep ourselves on a happy note, we still have the reality of lupus looming over us. I love the members of the group because you realize even though lupus treats everyone differently, at some point we've all gone through the same thing. So it's like, 'How did you go through this', and it's truly a support group, because you can go there feeling in pain, but when you leave, you still have the pain, but you're laughing."
The month of May is recognized around the world as Lupus Awareness Month, and Nassau-based support group Lupus 242 is leading the way in the education about the debilitating disease that affects an estimated 5.5 million people globally. There are no real statistics on the number of people in The Bahamas with lupus. Lupus 242 to date has 50 active members.
- Caribbean fashion reality series Mission Catwalk is on its sixth
episode and Belize's Rebecca Stirm, the only contestant to win more than
one challenge since the start of the second season on March 27th- has
copped her third win with a dress designed around the red HIV/AIDS
In Rebecca's design, the ribbon framed a high neckline and continued
down the back of the dress forming a dramatic scoop and crossing at the
lower back. Rebecca said she wanted to create a look that would portray
strength and courage since HIV is "nothing soft or pretty to face."
She found the perfect grey jacquard fabric...
- Genre : Drama
- Rating :
The story of a woman who loves her dog more than her husband. And then her husband loses the dog....