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Bertucci's invites customers to submit original recipes for a chance to be included on menu

For more than 25 years, Bertucci's Italian Restaurant has shared its flavor and love of Italy with its guests and now customers have the chance to share their taste of Italy with Bertucci's. Bertucci's is introducing the "Share Your Italian Recipe" contest to give customers the opportunity to become part of the Bertucci's culinary family. Bertucci's lovers can submit a favorite original Italian recipe with the winning dish featured on a Bertucci's menu insert in 2009. From Sept. 8 through Oct. 31, customers can enter at www.bertuccis.com. Bertucci's began in 1981 and was founded on standards of high quality food and service. Bertucci's does not use microwaves to prepare meals; instead, meals are made to order by grilling, saut ing or baking in the restaurant's signature brick oven. To meet Bertucci's high standards, only fresh ingredients are used, the restaurant's sauces are created from scratch and the dough for the signature rolls and pizza is made fresh every day throughout the day. The fresh ingredients make the Bertucci's dishes authentic and distinctively delicious, but passion is what makes each meal special. Bertucci's wants customers to share their passion for fresh Italian food. Bertucci's guests are not just customers, they are part of the Bertucci's family. Italian families love to cook and they also love to share recipes. "For 27 years, Bertucci's has developed delicious meals using high quality ingredients and time-honored Italian traditions," Chef Stefano Cordova, Bertucci's executive chef, said. "Distinctively delicious recipes are not just created by chefs, many are passed down through families. We want our customers to be part of the Bertucci's family and share their favorite Italian recipes with us." "Share Your Taste of Italy" Contest Bertucci's is asking customers to put on a chef's hat and apron and jump into the kitchen to create a recipe for the "Share Your Italian Recipe" contest. This is the opportunity for customers to share some of their favorite flavors with the extensive Bertucci's menu offerings. Consumers must submit recipes which follow Bertucci's culinary standards. No microwaves can be used in the process, the dish must be grilled, saut ed or even cooked in a brick oven. Only fresh ingredients can be included to create the entr e which can be a pasta, meat, fish or salad dish. And of course, it should fit with Bertucci's authentic, high quality menu. A team of judges led by Cordova will judge all recipe submissions based on the contest criteria above as well as the recipes' originality. Five finalists will be chosen from the following areas: Massachusetts/New Hampshire/Rhode Island; Hartford, Conn.; Philadelphia/New Jersey; Baltimore/Washington, D.C.; and Metro New York. One dish from the five finalists will be chosen as the winning recipe and will be featured on a Bertucci's special menu insert in 2009. The winner will not only have their dish highlighted in a Bertucci's menu insert, but will also receive a Bertucci's Chef Coat and $250 gift card. To enter, visit www.bertuccis.com through Oct. 31.

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