In February, Dallas firefighter Rett Blankenship claimed first prize for his glazed rack of lamb with smoky grits. Blankenship's $10,000 prize-winning dish was judged on taste, appearance, originality, creativity, recipe clarity and the use of one or more Tabasco pepper sauces.
Photos courtesy of Hunter Public
The events of 9/11 changed us. It was a day for hanging onto family, friends, neighbors and co-workers and being grateful they we were all right.
Thousands of other families, however, would not be so lucky and would never be whole again.
Firehouse families were ripped apart, too, as the loss of life to firefighters swiftly climbed into the hundreds.
On the morning of 9/11, New York City firefighter, certified fitness trainer and cookbook author Joseph T. Bonanno Jr. and his brother, Michael, also FDNY, were very involved in the rescue and recovery efforts at Ground Zero.
Firehouse cooks are among America's best chefs. Pictured are 2004 Tabasco Cook & Ladder Competition winners, from left, Firefighters William Benitez (New York), Leroy Fernandez (Park City, Utah) and Ronnie Horruitiner (Miami). The poster to their right is 9/11 rescue and recovery firefighter, fitness trainer and cookbook author, Joseph T. Bonanno Jr., and his Pasta Il Pompiere.
Larry Lettera/ Wagner Internatio
Just 45 minutes earlier, Joseph Bonanno had been doing a live-TV, on-air promotion of a firefighter-cooking contest and served firefighters of Ladder Company 3 his recipe for Pasta Il Pompiere which is Italian for firefighter.
Bonanno later learned that 12 of those firefighters were killed.
Firefighters understand the connection between food and fellowship, and firehouse cooks are among the finest chefs in America.
In remembrance and gratitude for the sacrifice made by the firefighters of 9/11, I am privileged to offer a few recipes from their firefighting brothers across America.
Thank you for all you do.
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