When the heat turned up, a Delray Beach native prevailed as top chef in Food Network’s cooking competition series “Chopped”.
There was no holding back Chef Shacafrica Herring-Simmons, a Delray Beach native, in the June episode titled “Greater Tater”. She competed against others in cooking up multiple dishes, with the signature ingredient: potato.
The competition began in the first round, where Chef Shac whipped up a crispy purple potato cake with Canadian bacon and spicy sour cream. That was followed up with a seared strip steak with fried potatoes and cheesy wasabi sauce. In the final round, Chef Shac cooked a sweet potato wonton tossed in toffee crumble and coconut cream sauce.
“Winning Food Network’s Chopped is an amazing accomplishment,” Chef Shac said. “It means the world to me to have my skill, my work, my story and my community be recognized on a national and international scale. I can truly say this level of exposure is priceless.”
Simmons was given a $10,000 grand prize for winning the competition and has earned plenty of recognition following the show’s airing.
Simmons now live in Tallahassee, but her family still lives here in her hometown of Delray Beach. She also lived in Riviera Beach, West Palm Beach and Boynton Beach over the years.
Simmons has been a professional chef for more than 15 years and holds two degrees in Culinary Arts and Pastry and Confectionary.
When not cooking, she spends time teaching cooking and nutrition with local organizations.