JOLLY University Year 4 grand champion Bernice Angeline Tenorio honors mom with her winning dish.
Bernice Angeline Tenorio of University of Sto. Tomas
Bernice Angeline Tenorio of University of Sto. Tomas
19-year-old Bernice Angeline D. Tenorio, JOLLY University Year 4 Cook-off grand winner, chose to honor her first kitchen hero, Mommy Lalaine, through her cooking. Unlike dishes that are inspired by trips abroad or created for personal glorification, Bernice’s award-winning recipe at the recent tilt was drawn from her fondest memories of, and deep love for, her amazing mother.
Champion in the making
The eldest among the brood of six, Bernice grew up in a big family with modest means. Despite financial hardships, Bernice graduated class valedictorian in grade school and was a consistent top student achiever in high school.
Bernice’s interest in cooking didn’t start until her grandmother, who operates a home-based kitchenette in Marilao, Bulacan, passed away in 2012. Mommy Lalaine decided to take over the business. From there, Bernice knew she needed to help her mother run it, thus they decided that she will take up Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Sto. Tomas (UST).
Bernice Tenorio and her mom, Lalaine
Bernice Tenorio and her mom, Lalaine
“She’s my first idol and mentor. I learned a lot about cooking from her, I look up to her and I try to mirror her strength: her patience, discipline, resourcefulness, the diligence, and how she handled the nitty-gritty aspects of running our small kitchen while looking after the family’s welfare. I remember both of us staying up till the wee hours of the morning finishing bulk food orders or decorating cakes for customers. It was tiring but very fulfilling,” she remarked.
Jolly moment   
When the news about JOLLY University Year 4 cooking competition reached Bernice in UST, she immediately signed up to try out. Mommy Lalaine, her Dad and her siblings supported her in her cook-off bid.
Bernice, with the help of her coach, came up with the Chicken and Mushroom Empanadilla dish, her prized entry in the recent JOLLY University Year 4 Cook-Off.  The recipe was simple yet creative, an easy-to-do JOLLY-inspired dish with balanced elements that satisfied judges’ expectations. According to Bernice, the Empanadilla, which is her original recipe, is her “little” way of thanking mommy Lalaine for everything she has done for her and the family.
Bernice Tenorio's Empanadilla
Bernice Tenorio’s Empanadilla
Success beyond measure
At present, Bernice is busy training along with fellow representatives from UST for her first out-of-the-country culinary competition, the Hong Kong Culinary Classics happening this month.  She couldn’t think of anyone else to dedicate her hard-earned triumphs and delicious new dishes other than her mother.
Bernice’s mom is a living portrait of the many mothers who have selflessly supported, endlessly inspired, and rejoiced in their children’s unforgettable life milestones.
JOLLY, for its part, pays tribute to all the amazing mothers by providing quality canned vegetables and fruit products that will help Moms cook easy to prepare and healthy dishes.
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