It's easy to imagine that she has spent her young life so far preparing to do so.
Radewahn, 21, is a culinary arts student at Waukesha County Technical College with a focus on baking and pastry. And she loves working with chocolate. But there's even more to it than that.
Radewahn was home-schooled all the way up to college by her mother, Carla Radewahn, who was herself a culinary school graduate, from the vaunted Milwaukee Area Technical College program.
So cooking has been a large part of Rebekah's life from the cradle.
But Rebekah did forge her own way to win a blue ribbon for her Chocolate Raspberry Dream cake.
"I've always had an interest in baking," she said. "My mother was very much more into savory; I was into sweet.
"I have much more patience than her. I'm a perfectionist, and I don't mind taking the time pastry takes. I love that part of it."
Anyone who knows the culinary arts understands that savory chefs and pastry chefs are different animals. Savory chefs measure in handfuls, splashes and pinches; pastry chefs measure in milliliters and grams.
Rebekah, who just finished food service production courses at WCTC and is about to begin the baking and pastry track, hopes someday to have her own business decorating cakes and making "fancy desserts." She has entered and won cooking contests before, including at earlier State Fairs.
But she was thrilled to see chocolate as the star of a new 2012 competition.
"I always look for the chocolate," she said, "so as soon as I saw it I got excited. I love Ghirardelli products. I use them all the time."
For this ribbon event, Rebekah decided to enter a recipe she's been working over for years. Her Chocolate Raspberry Dream actually began as a recipe she found long ago in a magazine, but she's made it her own.
"I've changed every part of it so many times," she said, "that it's nothing like the original.
"The original had a brownie base, and I've made it a cake. And the filling was mint, and I've changed it to raspberry."
Rebekah's top tip for those who want to make award-winning chocolate desserts is to learn to temper your chocolate. Tempering, she says, involves melting only a portion of the chocolate over controlled heat and then adding the rest, letting the heat of the already melted chocolate do the work.
"It affects the molecular structure of the chocolate," Rebekah said. "It's a little bit tricky to do, but it's worth it."
Ghirardelli Chocolate offers these instructions for tempering chocolate on its website, including an instructional video.
Below is Rebekah Radewahn's recipe for:
Chocolate Raspberry Dream
Chocolate Truffle Cake:
1 teaspoon melted butter
6 ounces Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Baking Chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup butter, cut into tablespoons
2 ounces Ghirardelli 100% Cacao Unsweetened Chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon white sugar
Raspberry Chocolate Glaze:
4 ounces Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Baking Chocolate
6 tablespoons butter
1-1/2 teaspoons light corn syrup
2-1/2 teaspoons water
1/2 teaspoons raspberry extract
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1-1/2 cups Ghirardelli White Chocolate Chips
2 teaspoons solid vegetable shortening
1/4 teaspoons raspberry extract
2-3 drops red food coloring
5 Ghirardelli Raspberry Filled Dark Chocolate Squares, coarsely chopped
For the cake: Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Assemble an 8-inch spring form pan with bottom insert turned with lip facing down. Lightly coat the bottom with some of the melted butter. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and lightly coat the paper and edges with the rest of the melted butter. Melt the Ghirardelli 60% cacao baking chocolate, the 1/2 cup butter and the Ghirardelli 100% cacao unsweetened chocolate in a small glass bowl in the microwave in 30 second intervals until melted, stirring until smooth. Set aside until needed. Place the eggs, egg yolk and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a balloon whip. Whisk on high speed until light in color and slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove the bowl from mixer. Using a rubber spatula, fold the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Place the pan on a baking sheet on the center rack of the oven. Bake for 26 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out slightly moist with chocolate crumbs. Remove from oven and cool in pan for 20 minutes. Release cake from pan. Remove bottom insert and peel parchment away. Place cake back on bottom of pan and replace the ring. Set aside at room temperature.
For the glaze: In a microwave safe bowl, combine Ghirardelli %60 cacao baking chocolate, butter, corn syrup and water. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. Stir mixture until smooth. Cool slightly. Add raspberry extract. Cool to room temperature.
For the filling: In a medium bowl combine cream cheese and butter, mix to combine. In a double boiler or microwave, melt Ghirardelli white chocolate and shortening, mix well. Add chocolate mixture to cream cheese and beat just until smooth. While mixture is beating, add raspberry extract and red food coloring. Fold in raspberry chocolates. Smooth filling over top of cooled cake base and chill until firm, about 2 hours.
To finish: Remove sides of spring form pan. Place dessert on a cake circle. Pour glaze in the center of the dessert in one motion. With a small angled spatula, quickly and gently spread chocolate to the edge of the dessert, allowing some to drip over the sides. Chill to set glaze. To serve, garnish with chocolate shavings or as desired. Cut into small wedges. Yields: 12 servings.