Restaurateur and "Chopped" champ to spend day at Platt Tech

Chef Heather Profetto, a recent “Chopped” champion and local restaurant co-owner, will spend the day Friday working with Platt Technical High School’s culinary arts students to prep, cook and serve a specially designed menu, including a soup de jour, four entrees and two desserts.

Profetto will be at the school from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., working with students in “The Orchard” café.

Profetto is co-owner of Rainbow Gardens Restaurant & Bar in downtown Milford.

“Fresh off her appearance on the hit television cooking competition series, “Chopped,” Profetto will spend the day sharing her skills and professional advice while motivating students, staff and chefs, according to a press release about tomorrow’s appearance.

Heather walked away the winner of Chopped, the family edition, when she competed against her family members and fellow Rainbow Gardens staff in a program that aired Dec. 15.

The family-themed Chopped was a twist on the traditional episodes of the popular culinary competition, where chefs from different areas and different establishments compete against each other for the cooking crown — and the cash prize. In Family Chopped, family members compete against each other.

In this case, it was Heather Profetto competing against her husband, John Profetto, son Ryan Profetto and her sister Kate Campbell.

The show was taped last spring, about 15 hours here in Milford and then another day in New York.

Heather and her sister are both graduates of the Culinary Institute of Art in New York, so they had cooking credentials and their experience to back them up. It was a close race between the two — Ryan was cut in the first round, followed by John, leaving the two sisters to battle it out in the kitchen. Both earned heaps of praise from the judges, but after the final round — the dessert round — Heather was named the winner, meaning, she said, she got to keep the “boss lady” title that she has acquired at Rainbow Gardens.

Rainbow Gardens, which Heather describes as cross-continental with a concentration on healthy and fresh ingredients — or bar meets spa — started out as a takeout and catering business in a small building on Bridgeport Avenue near Bridges, a local health agency. In 1993 John and Heather opened the Rainbow Cafe in New Haven. Then in 1995 they bought an  historic house at 117 Broad Street to house Rainbow Gardens, which has become a destination restaurant in downtown Milford.

People who missed the Chopped episode can view it on the Rainbow Gardens website at