Cast Iron Chefs

Celebrity Chefs,Food and Travel,Heroes,Recipes,Regional Food
August 23, 2012

Alton Brown hosts the Cast Iron Cookoff in Chattanooga, and we went behind-the-scenes to get the winning recipe—glazed shrimp with quinoa and curried tomatoes.

cast iron cookoff
Mark Boughton

Alton Brown held up a plastic bag of pink shrimp and screamed “start your engines.” With the mystery ingredient revealed, seven chefs scurried to choose other items for their dishes at the annual Cast Iron Cookoff at the Chattanooga (Tenn.) Market. Brown, in town to promote his sustainable seafood program, was the guest emcee at the 2011 event where chefs cooked up seasonal dishes using cast iron skillets.

cast iron cookoff
Tantalizing aromas soon filled the air as the chefs got to work. Cast iron skillets heated up. Sauces simmered. Ears of corn steamed and tomatoes sautéed.
roasted tomatoes
Daniel Lindley, of St. John’s Restaurant in Chattanooga, claimed victory with his jelly-glazed shrimp, nestled in a bed of quinoa and sweet cherry tomatoes. “It was fun,” he said afterward in his usual understated way. “I love the freedom of cooking. That’s what really matters.”
shrimp skillet
The Cast Iron Cookoff, sponsored by Lodge Manufacturing in South Pittsburg, Tenn., is one of Chattanooga’s top food festivals. For information about the 2012 event, scheduled for Sept. 23, go to
—Story by Nancy Henderson, a freelance writer in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Glazed Shrimp with Quinoa and Curried Tomatoes

Daniel Lindley of St. John’s Restaurant in Chattanooga, Tenn., uses fresh cherry tomatoes seasoned with curry as a contrast to the hot sweet shrimp and toasted quinoa.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 261 other followers