The Culinary Youth Team Canada from Holland College's Culinary Institute of Canada has brought home four gold and three silver medals after competing in the Nations' Cup International Student Culinary Competition in Grand Rapids, Mich. 

Tracy Wildrick, Isabelle Chevarie and their chef instructor, Hans Anderegg, took part in three days of intense competitions against teams with the best young chefs from around the world. 

To prepare, Wildrick said they did five black box practices, using the same concept of having 20 minutes to go through them to prepare a menu and then 90 minutes to cook. 

"So Chef Hans, he got us some cool items like some quail, pheasant, lamb loin, so we practised with that."

Team work important 

Wildrick and Chevarie met to discuss how they work as a team which was important for the competition. 

chef competiton

Chef instructor Hans Anderegg helped Chevarie and Wildrick prepare for the competition. (Angela Walker/CBC)

Chevarie described the competition as frightening.

"It was a lot of live action and a lot of uncertainty, so it was all about trusting your partner."

In one of the black boxes the team got four live trout that they had to catch, dispatch and filet. 

"One of ours got away, but Tracy caught it," said Chevarie. 

Anderegg said he had full confidence the team of young chefs would catch it and get it on the plate. 

Among the awards the team won was best in show for the appetizer they prepared with risotto. 

"I was very proud, four gold medals, that was very nice. It started off with a gold medal best in show and just kept going," said Anderegg. "I'm very proud of them what they did." 

The chef said the competition helps them build confidence to work in different kitchens with different ingredients. 

"The more they know the more they can actually do in the kitchen."   

With files from Mainstreet