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Crowning Yellowknife's Greatest Baker
Long John Jamboree cooks up excitement for this year's festivities with baking competition

Katherine Hudson
Northern News Services
Published Tuesday, January 15, 2013

As about a dozen students buzzed around Sir John Franklin High School's food studies room on Jan. 9, Aimee Yurris pulled on oven mitts and removed her cinnamon mocha cupcakes from the oven.

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Sir John Franklin High School Grade 11 student Aimee Yurris takes cinnamon mocha cupcakes from the oven during food studies class on Jan. 9. Yurris will be entering the cake and cupcake categories for the Long John Jamboree's Yellowknife's Greatest Baker competition on Jan. 20. - Katherine Hudson/NNSL photo

Now that the Long John Jamboree organizing committee has announced the upcoming Yellowknife's Greatest Baker competition, set for Sunday, every opportunity to practice baking brings entrants closer to the crown.

Adrian Bell, who spearheaded the inaugural winter jamboree, said although the festival is not scheduled until March, he hopes the baking competition will get the excitement rolling.

"Basically, the idea is to have a greatest baker contest, to get all kinds of contestants to compete in seven different categories: from cakes to muffins to bannock, things like that to just compete, do their best, and we'll hand out prizes," said Bell.

The categories include cakes, pies, muffins, cupcakes, cookies, specialty items such as breads, bannocks and pastries, and a separate division for bakers under age 12.

There will be judges for each category and each winner will compete to crown one winner as Yellowknife's Greatest Baker. The winner will hold the title until next year's competition.

The event is set to take place at the Smoke House Cafe in Ndilo from 2:30 until 5 p.m on Sunday. Once the judging concludes, the products will be sold to the public.

"All of the recipes from all of the winners will go into a Long John Jamboree cookbook, which is something that we'd like to do on an annual basis," said Bell.

The cookbook will be on sale at the jamboree in March.

Bell said those entering the competition will create their baking masterpiece elsewhere and then bring it to the event to be judged. While creativity will be included in the judging, "the most important thing here will be the quality of the baked good," he said.

Sixteen-year-old Yurris is excited to enter the cakes and the cupcakes categories. She finished first in last year's territorial Skills Canada Competition for baking and finished 10th overall at the national competition in Edmonton.

"It's all about precision and your things have to be measured exactly and timed exactly. Also the creativity, it's kind of hard to think of really good creative ideas that are original and not something that everyone else is doing," said Yurris. "I think it's a really great opportunity for home bakers around Yellowknife to show what they have."

The competition is open for registration until Friday. Those interested can contact the Long John Jamboree organizing committee.

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