The Food Channel is excited to bring you a sneak peek of some of the footage from our upcoming documentary, “Behind the Dream.” It’s the story of how people and pastry can both make a difference in the lives of young people with a dream. It just starts with one person with a vision.
Believe it or not, that vision was sketched out on a napkin. That napkin became measurements. Those measurements became a design. That design became . . . well, we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
Let’s just say the next step started with one of the new Chocolate Dips Jelly Beans from the Jelly Belly Candy Company.
And it ended with a fabulous event held at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago.
The event took over the entire first floor of the historic location, which is one of the largest buildings in the world. There were six themed areas with performances by Redmoon Theater representing Cocoa Venetian Carnival, Sweet as Sin, Cocoa Candy Land, the Confectiatory, Cocoa Sutra, and the Chocolate Spa. Plus, there were tastings from restaurants, candy companies and chocolatiers throughout Chicago.
There were some celebrity pastry chefs there, too, like Keegan Gerhard of D Bar Desserts and frequent Food Network Challenge emcee; Johnny Iuzzini, former Pastry Chef of Jean-Georges and judge of Top Chef: Just Desserts; and Chris Hanmer of The School of Pastry Design and winner of Top Chef: Just Desserts Season 2.
The goal: to raise money for scholarships to the French Pastry School.
All of those in attendance were positive about the scholarship program and the need to give students a boost.
“The French Pastry School gives students the tools and education they need to make an impact in the pastry world,” said Hanmer. “Without scholarships like For the Love of Chocolate, we run the risk of missing the next star pastry chef. As food lovers, it is our responsibility to give back and help people reach their culinary dreams.”
In 2011, thanks to the generosity of the foundation’s sponsors, alumni, guests, industry vendors and associates, the 6th annual gala raised over $70,0000. All of these funds were awarded as scholarships to students of The French Pastry School’s L’Art de la Pâtisserie and L’Art du Gâteau programs after a competitive application process. Scholarship recipients have gone on to work in leading pastry kitchens around the country and open small businesses, making the world a sweeter place to live.
For more, check out additional stories and watch for our full length documentary coming out around Easter. We’ll show you the making of the “bean” and lots more behind-the-scenes.
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