Who bakes the best Hardee’s Made from Scratch Biscuits in America? Apparently Lisa Smith of the Hardee’s in Greenfield, Indiana (1181 N. State St.), does, as she beat out over 1,900 bakers to win the 2010 Hardee’s Biscuit Baker Challenge, an internal competition where Hardee’s seeks to find and honor their best biscuit baker. The five bakers with the highest scores competed in the final round of the competition, held on May 12 at Hardee’s headquarters in St. Louis.
Smith competed in the Biscuit Baker Challenge along with Lee Damien of Virginia Beach, Virginia; Sherry Schwabe of Waldo, Florida; Angela Perazza of St. Mary’s, Georgia; and Elvia Arroyo of Des Moines, Iowa.
Biscuit bakers were judged on their knowledge of Hardee’s biscuit procedures and standards as well as on their ability to prepare and bake a batch of Made from Scratch biscuits to performance standards and expectations. Baked biscuits were evaluated and judged on appearance, height, weight, diameter, texture, color, and, of course, taste.
“Lisa is a highly skilled biscuit baker and proved to us all that she knows how to make the best biscuits,” says Bob Starke, executive vice president of operations for Hardee’s Food Systems Inc. “With the best-of-the-best competing, the competition was intense and very close between all of the bakers. Though Lisa came out on top, all of the finalists did a fantastic job during the challenge and we are very proud of each and every one of them.”
“Our biscuits are a very big part of the company’s heritage,” says Brad Haley, executive vice president of marketing for Hardee’s. “As an industry leader, Hardee’s has often been targeted by many imitators trying to duplicate the success of our Made from Scratch biscuits. However, while some companies think that machine-produced, frozen biscuits are acceptable, a true biscuit connoisseur knows that nothing compares to Hardee’s steaming-hot, buttermilk biscuits made fresh and from scratch by dedicated bakers who love what they do.”
Five of the regional winners with the highest scores were flown to St. Louis to compete in the national finals of the Biscuit Baker Challenge at Hardee’s test kitchen headquarters. They were presented with custom-made Hardee’s hats and baker/chef coats and attended a St. Louis Cardinals baseball game in the Hardee’s box suite where they were recognized on the field before the game. In addition to bragging rights for being the best, Smith also received a commemorative plaque, $1,000, and an all-expense paid trip to the San Antonio River Walk for winning the Biscuit Baker Challenge. The runner-ups were also awarded $500 and finalist plaques.