Elizabeth “Lizzy” Williams, a student at Arizona Culinary Institute, was recently honored as a top contender at the Scottsdale Regional Food Championships, and will now compete in the World Food Championships held in Las Vegas dubbed ‘The Ultimate Food Fight’, November 12-18. Nine contestants will ultimately compete for $100,000 in prizes.
Williams is going to the championships on the strength of her recipe for a three-cheese pizza that she calls “Manna From Heaven,” created by her and a friend from her hometown of El Paso, Texas.
“Baking is my passion, and I grew up watching my mom and grandmother cook with very organic and natural ingredients,” notes a very excited Williams. “I would help make our bread for the week, and I always loved how our creations made people happy – and gave me so much enjoyment.”
Williams was originally enrolled in Pre-Nursing, but she decided to follow her passion and obtained an Associate’s Degree in Pastry in El Paso. When her mom came to Arizona for medical reasons, however, Williams decided to follow her and enrolled at Arizona Culinary Institute for the opportunity to enhance her baking skills, while also gaining cooking and restaurant management experience.
“Lizzy has the smarts and talent to take her career to the top,” notes Arizona Culinary Institute Chef Instructor Philip Sayre. “Her enthusiasm and high standards will always be the benchmark of a true professional. Ms. Williams exhibits all of the necessary assets to achieve great things in this field.”
ACI’s Professor Bruce Sandground recommended Lizzy compete in Scottsdale, and now, she’s poised to compete in the finals of the World Food Championship in Las Vegas beginning on Thursday, November 13, where she’ll be required to create two dishes in two hours.
A confident, but still undecided Williams laughs when asked what she’ll be preparing: “It’s going to be awesome, and I may try raviolis with a different kind of cheese than most people would expect!”
Lizzy’s confidence carries over to her future aspirations where she has already envisioned a place of her own:
“I can’t wait to open up my own custom cake shop, a place where you can order fantastic creations like wedding cakes,” smiles Williams. “I just love working with fondant and creating cakes that are truly my own.”
The Arizona Culinary Institute’s founding principles are traditional, proven French Method cooking skills combined with the best of modern techniques. ACI prepares students for careers in Culinary Arts & Hospitality covering a broad range of areas. du Jour Restaurant is the culinary laboratory that the advanced students of the school operate as a French fine dining experience. For more information, please contact the Arizona Culinary Institute at (480) 603-1066 or firstname.lastname@example.org