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Students Create Award-Winning Ice Creams

All 10 Front Porch contest winners, including Deanna Tutrani (far left) and Marti Kelley (center, with light green collar).JWU students Marti Kelley and Deanna Tutrani know exactly what it takes to whip up an award-winning ice cream. They recently won Grand Prize and Runner Up in the second annual Front Porch Carolina Churned Ice Cream Flavor Competition, open exclusively to JWU students.

“We were blown away by the creativity of these local student chefs,” said Babi Alarcon, CEO of Mooresville Ice Cream Company and Front Porch.

Out of 53 students, 10 finalists were selected to create their recipes, which were then judged by JWU faculty and Front Porch employees based on taste, texture and the flavor’s link to the South.

The full list of final flavors (and the students who created them):

  • Southern Coffee Explosion (Marti Kelley)
  • Crazy Carrot Cake (Deanna Tutrani)
  • Burst of Ambrosia (Deanna Ashcraft)
  • Shut Your Mouth Sweet Potato Pie (Madison Cullman)
  • Mama’s Flapjacks with Bacon (Jade Duncan)
  • Carolina Blueberry (Sally Foster)
  • Harvest Pumpkin Spice (Mary Johnson-Clause)
  • Marvelous Mississippi Mud Brownie (Ayalah Raphiel)
  • Brittle Me This? (Erica Sperduto)
  • Buzzing Honey Almond (Jennifer Wells)

All 10 flavors will be tested and developed by Mooresville Ice Cream Company, Front Porch’s parent company. Here’s hoping one or more end up on store shelves across the South.

Marti Kelley dishes up her Grand Prize-winning Front Porch flavor, Southern Coffee Explosion.

Here’s how Marti and Deanna came up with their uniquely Southern-inspired ice creams:

How did you develop your flavor?
Marti: I created Southern Coffee Explosion from taking everything I love from being in the South. We drink coffee with our desserts, which normally consist of brownies with salted pecans and caramel sauce.

Deanna: I came up with this idea by thinking of the best Southern desserts that I could. I love carrot cake and knew that it was something that no one had tried yet so I went for it!

Challenges you had to overcome during the process?
Deanna: Thanks to the Hot and Cold class that I took, making and churning the ice cream was actually very easy. The biggest challenge was trying to keep the carrot cake from getting soggy. I did that by freezing it the night before and then leaving it in the blast chiller until I was ready to add it to my ice cream.

What’s next for you?

Marti: I will be starting my internship at Sea Island in Georgia.

Deanna: It's really fun to be able to create your own flavor and it’s an even bigger honor when your flavor is good enough to win. I will definitely be getting involved with more competitions!

Find out which student creations get turned into new flavors by following Front Porch Ice Cream on Twitter. Ready to test your culinary chops in competitions like this one? Get started at our College of Culinary Arts.