Wednesday, February 12, 2014

2014 Samoa Soiree

Chef Kisha Frazier's winning
Key Lime Samoas Tarts
On February 8, top chefs in Hampton Roads competed in the 6th annual Samoa Soiree, an annual fundraising event hosted by Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast, where Girl Scout Cookies are used to create unique desserts and appetizers. This year’s competitors included returning champion Chef Kisha Frazier of Chesapeake, who took home the award for judge’s choice for favorite dessert for her Thin Mints-inspired macaroons in 2013. This year, her Key Lime Samoas Tarts stole the show, winning Best in Show and People’s Choice for Favorite Dessert.

Frazier’s popularity as a pastry chef has been growing for the past four years since she opened Terebinth Patisserie and Bistro in Chesapeake. She has closed Terebinth, but her sweet treats are still available at her new location—Hummingbird Macarons located inside Now That’s Good Cooking Culinary Studio in Chesapeake, as well as a kiosk at MacArthur Center in Norfolk.

For Frazier, participating in the Samoa Soiree is about much more than the friendly culinary competition. It’s about supporting the Girl Scouts, an organization that helped to shape her life and today. Frazier vividly remembers cooking a Sunrise sandwich over a campfire with Girl Scouts—an experience that helped her chart a course in culinary arts.

“I still remember how great that open-faced sandwich tasted,” Frazier said. “We hollowed out the center so we could cook the egg in the middle, and sprinkled the outer edges with cheese. Not only did it taste great, but I experienced it at a campsite in Hawaii with 20 of my favorite Girl Scout friends!”

Her experiences in Girl Scouting, earning badges, including the cooking badge, and learning to take risks in and out of the kitchen, inspired her to pursue her dream to be a chef and take the risk of being a business owner.

Frazier started out as a banquet server, and she discovered that she enjoyed making sure that people had an enjoyable dining experience. This prompted her to attend Johnson and Wales University and then receieve accreditation in food and beverage management at Norfolk State University. Following her schooling, she was the opening chef at Nordstrom CafĂ©. She also worked as the school server manager at a top private school before opening Terebinth. Now, as the owner and pastry chef at Hummingbird Macarons, Frazier can focus on the things she does best—including macaroons and tarts.

Read more about Samoa Soiree here and view photos here.

Chef Kisha Frazier (second from right) with friends in front of her table at
the 6th annual Samoa Soiree.