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Cook of the Week 2018

For detailed information about the contest, contestants and their dishes - CLICK HERE

The challenge began with eight local home chefs, each with unique tastes and talents. For the first four weeks, each contestant received a mystery bag of ingredients and had a few days to create a dish to help them move on to the next challenge.

2018 Cook of the Week chefs include Oscar Chapa, Darla Pitts, Roberta Fahey, Dylan James, Leslie Little, Lola Kamuda, Ann Wayne, and Mark Clemens.

Clockwise:Oscar Chapa, Darla Pitts, Roberta Fahey, Dylan James, Leslie Little, Lola Kamuda, Ann Wayne, and Mark Clemens.

Each mystery bag of ingredients introduced a new challenge

First round of mystery ingredients: Vanilla Bean Paste from Neilsen- Massey; Caminito Ham Off The Bone from Greenridge Farm; butternut squash from AMITA Health Systems; Anjou pears; and Erythritol from NOW Foods.

Second round of mystery ingredients: Mackerel Royal Filet with Jalapeño from King Oscar; peeled plum tomatoes courtesy of Northern Illinois Food Bank; Red Jalapeño Mustard from Greenridge Farm; and baby spinach.

Third round of mystery ingredients: Pure Lemon Paste from Nielsen-Massey Vanillas; Greek yogurt from Golden Brunch; orzo; Tacchino Arrosto Oven Roasted Italian Turkey from Greenridge Farm; and Pumpkin Seed Oil from NOW Foods.

Fourth round of mystery ingredients: Tomato Brisling Sardines from King Oscar; Q Cup Quinoa from NOW Foods; canned artichoke hearts from Chandler's Chop House; French bread crumbs from Gonnella Baking Co.; and Sun-Dried Tomato & Basil Chicken Sausage from Greenridge Farm.

Moving to the Cook of the Week Challenge finale is Oscar Chapa, Mark Clemens, Roberta Fahey, and Darla Pitts

The final four moved on to the finale to compete in a live cook-off. The finale, held at Westin Northwest Chicago in Itasca provided guests with appetizers, drinks, raffle prizes, and live cooking demonstrations from celebrity chefs. Scroll down to see images of the event.

Meet the Contestants

2018's Cook of the Year, Darla Pitts of Chicago/Arlington Heights

Darla's Dishes

Mark Clemens

Mark Clemens of Elgin

Mark's Dishes

Roberta Fahey

Roberta Fahey of Arlington Heights

Roberta's Dishes

Oscar Chapa

Oscar's Dishes

Ann Wayne

Ann's Dishes

Dylan James

Leslie Little

Leslie's Dishes

Lola Kamuda

Lola's Dish

What a fun night during the Cook of the Week Challenge finale!

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