Thursday Tidbit – The Baron H. Galand Culinary Knowledge Bowl

A recent comment on the blog with a link to the official rules for the Baron H. Galand Culinary Knowledge Bowl inspired today’s post. Several relatives have told me that cousin Harold Galand was a famous chef, but I wonder if you knew that an annual competition sponsored by the American Culinary Federation is named after him.

You can read more about it here. Here is a brief excerpt from the American Culinary Federation’s website –

About the Competition

First held at the 1992 ACF National Convention in Washington, D.C., the Baron H. Galand Culinary Knowledge Bowl is the brainchild of Carol Kelly, a member of the Nation’s Capital Chefs’ Association and a culinary instructor. She used the competition format as a way of testing her vocational high school students.

As the competition grew, it was named after former ACF President and long time advocate of apprentices and junior members Baron H. Galand, CEC.

Today the competition includes sensory questions, hidden pictures, and of course challenging culinary, baking, nutrition, sanitation and math questions.

The fact that his peers named an annual competition after him says a lot about how well-regarded Harold Galand was among his peers. He certainly seems to be a man of many talents. He worked for a number of years in the Connellsville school system as cafeteria manager. He owned, with his second wife Janet Bryson, the Howard Johnson Motel on Route 40 in Hopwood, and  from all accounts was very successful in that venture.

Many of Adriano Giorgio’s grandchildren have mentioned that when they visited Grandmother George in Dunbar, it was usually Aunt Phil (Harold’s mother) who did the cooking. Others remember the wonderful garden that Uncle Tony grew in the space between the Galand’s house and Grandma George’s house. Harold must have been paying attention to his mother’s cooking skills and his father’s focus on fresh local food – well before the current trend that has resulted in an explosion of “farm to fork” restaurants and the “slow food” movement.

When I talked to Richard Galand he mentioned that his father – Antonio Gallanti – came to Pennsylvania from a small village in Abruzzo Italy when he was 16 years old. According to Richard, when his parents married, an “English lady” welcomed Aunt Phil to the neighborhood as “Mrs. Galand.” Aunt Phil liked the sound of that and it was the name the family went by from then on. But uncle Tony continued to endorse his checks Antonio Gallanti. Harold later told his younger brother Richard that he wished their father had kept the name Gallanti.

I’d love to hear from anyone who had the chance to enjoy the Baron’s, aka Harold Gallanti’s, culinary talents.




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