Senior Living Residences Hosts Annual Top Chef Cook-Off

Pictured from left to right: Kim Chaisson, SLR Director of Culinary & Dining Services, Bras Texeira, Heights Crossing Director of Dining Experience, and Tadd Clelland, SLR President & CEO

Senior Living Residences recently held its Annual Top Chef Cook Off, which took attendees on a trip around the world with bold flavors and inventive dishes. This high-energy competition sees chefs from across SLR’s 18 Assisted Living communities display their talents as they face off to determine who can prepare the best plates. 

The Cook-Off is centered around SLR’s Grab Your Passport! armchair travel program, which allows residents to virtually immerse themselves in new cultures and connect with the world around them from the comfort of their communities. Each chef is assigned a country from the list of 2024 Grab Your Passport! destinations and prepares a delicious array of appetizers, a main course, and a dessert reflective of the local cuisine. The chefs go all out to impress a panel of guest judges, who evaluate the food based on a variety of categories such as adherence to the company’s Mediterranean-inspired Brain Healthy Cooking program, authenticity to the chosen country, and taste and appeal. 

SLR’s Brain Healthy Cooking program is an award-winning nutrition program that draws inspiration from the research-backed Mediterranean diet and incorporates fresh ingredients such as lean meats and fish, leafy green vegetables, whole grains, herbs, and spices into delicious meals for residents. In combination, these ingredients have been shown to slow and even prevent cognitive decline, boost brain health and promote overall well-being. 

Heights Crossing’s beautifully carved watermelon

The competition highlighted a range of countries and cuisines, from Lebanon, to Spain, to Egypt and Albania. The chefs’ creativity stood out in dishes such as Hashweh (Lebanese rice with chicken, beef, tomato, almonds and cranberries), shrimp empanadas, and Qifqi (Albanian rice balls). Crowd favorites also included Irish lobster and salmon terrine over brown bread and Greek baklava. 

While the judges certainly had a difficult choice of Top Chef, the winner was ultimately Bras Teixeira of Heights Crossing Assisted Living in Brockton, MA! Bras and his sous chefs Clyde Benoit and Gilson Barbosa prepared Kashary (rice with pasta served with lentils and tangy tomato sauce with onions), Molokhia soup (molokhia leaves, chicken base, spinach), Egyptian bread pudding with coconut, pecans, walnuts and almonds, and Egyptian rice pudding. The team’s station also featured intricately carved watermelons with symbols of a pharaoh and hieroglyphics, along with melons, papayas and dragon fruit carved into flowers. The creativity of Bras’ food combined with the incredible flavors, adherence to Brain Healthy Cooking, and presentation left the panel in awe and granted him and the Heights Crossing community a well-earned victory. 

Learn more about Brain Healthy Cooking and Senior Living Residences at SLR.US/brain-healthy-cooking.