Love to cook? Hate to cook? The following food contests offer something for everyone. A few tips: Read contest rules carefully for specifics on ingredients and deadlines. Before you send your recipe off, read it once more to make sure you haven't forgotten any of the ingredients and that your cooking directions are clear. Don't forget to include exact cooking times, temperatures and pan sizes.
Paul Newman says the inspiration for his spicy, tomato-based Diavolo Sauce came to him in a dream. If you can dream up a clever way to use his sauce in a recipe, you (and five others) could win an all-expense-paid trip for two to New York City to meet Newman at the final judging. Grand prize is $50,000, donated to your favorite charity. The complete rules and an entry form are found in the June issue of Good Housekeeping or on specially labeled jars of Diavolo Sauce. To find out where Diavolo Sauce is sold, call (800) 222-4409 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST.
Sutter Home Winery, Kraft USA and Del Monte Foods are sponsoring the second annual Build a Better Burger recipe competition. Come up with a prize-winning burger--meat, fish or vegetables, just as long as it can be formed into a patty and fits in a bun--and you could win the $10,000 grand prize. For contest rules, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Build a Better Burger Entry Request, 2716 Ocean Park Blvd., Suite 1050, Santa Monica, Calif. 90405. The contest runs through Aug. 23.
The object of the California Milk Advisory Board's LightStyle Cooking With Butter contest is to use butter to enhance the flavor of a recipe without exceeding the recommended maximum intake for fat, calories or cholesterol. To win, you'll have to come up with an original recipe using approximately one teaspoon to one tablespoon of butter per serving. Top prize is two nights' stay at the Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco; two days of cooking classes at Tante Marie's Cooking School, and $500 spending money. For a complete list of rules and prizes, send a self-addressed stamped envelope to: LightStyle Cooking With Butter, Contest Rules, 535 Pacific, Suite 400, San Francisco, Calif. 94133.
If you reach for Ocean Spray only on doctor's orders, you probably won't care that the company has just announced it will pay $1,000 for an original recipe using Ocean Spray blended juice drinks. Entrants should submit original, unpublished recipes using at least a half-cup of an Ocean Spray blended juice drink in a cocktail/mocktail, punch, dessert or entree. Print or type your recipe on an 8 1/2-by-11-inch paper along with your name, address, telephone number and entry category. Ingredients should be listed in exact amounts and in the order of use. Abbreviations should not be used. Mail your entries to Distinctive Taste Recipe Contest, Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc., One Ocean Spray Drive., Lakeville-Middleboro, Mass. 02349. Entries must be postmarked by Sept. 30.
Every year oyster fanciers gather for the National Oyster Cook-off in Maryland's St. Mary's County. If you've got a favorite oyster recipe that fits into one of the four cook-off divisions--hors d'oeuvres, soups and stews, main dishes or outdoor cookery and salads--print or type your recipe on an 8 1/2-by-11-inch paper and put your name, address and telephone number at the bottom. Indicate division entered. Three winners in each division will compete for the national title and the $1,000 grand prize. Send recipes to: Oyster Cook-Off, Attention: DECD, P.O. Box 653, Leonardtown, Md. 20650. Recipes must be submitted by Aug. 1.
To celebrate its 80th anniversary, Hamilton Beach is offering a contest that requires no cooking. All the winner has to do is have the oldest operating Hamilton Beach appliance; the grand prize is $1,000. Hamilton Beach, best known for those '40s green soda fountain malt makers, at one time made everything from a hand-held electric massager to electric cake mixers. For more information on entering your antique, and a copy of the official contest rules, call (800) 486-80YRS. Entries must be received no later than Aug. 1.