Sibling rivalry for two Miami sisters is about to play out on the national stage. Amelia and Catalina Frías will be competing on Food Network’s “Chopped Junior” cooking competition. On Oct. 3 the sisters will be competing individually for $10,000 in the series’ first Sibling Showdown.
The Somerset Academy South Miami students, and in full disclosure, my youngest daughters, fell in love with cooking at a very young age. Their first entree into cooking came at the age of 2 when I would teach them to crack eggs and make cookie dough from scratch. They would naturally evolve into making breakfast. The girls and their older sister, Elise, 14, who attends Our Lady of Lourdes Academy, have been recording their food adventures on their food blog www.threelittleforks.com for more than five years. They review restaurants and try their hand at making dishes.
Their love of food meant there were nights they would ask me if they could cook dinner, and I would take advantage of these nights to clean out the fridge. I would tell them they could use any leftovers to create a new dish and make their dinner. They loved the challenge and were so proud of their meals. That is how their homemade “Chopped” competitions began. Soon Catalina asked me to learn how to bake and specifically to learn how to work with fondant, so I enrolled her in a baking camp. At the end of camp they gave her a brochure with information on how to apply to one of the the Food Network’s kids baking competitions. She asked me to fill out the application. Now, I knew she was not a skilled baker, but she was a great cook. So Catalina changed her strategy and begged to enter “Chopped Junior.” I quickly jumped online, found the application and begin filling it out when Amelia walked into the room and asked what was going on. When she found out, she wanted in.
The girls were shocked when they received a call last August, telling them they were being considered for the show. In preparation many crazy and fun competitions at home began. The girls would come home from school to whatever ingredients they had — shrimp, coconut milk and asparagus or marshmallows, matcha green tea and cashews — to make dishes within 30 minutes. Their range was amazing. Then Elise and I would judge them and declare a winner.
Now these two sisters, who play volleyball together and bunk in the same room, will be competing against each other and another set of siblings as they show the world their cooking skills under a ton of pressure. They proved that whatever they grow up to be, they will always be sisters first.