27 June 2019
Four members of Cornell Dining's culinary team headed to UMass Amherst last week for the Chef Culinary Conference, and they came home with a Gold Medal following the ACF Market Basket team culinary competition.
The competition, which had a 17-team field, has medals awarded based on scores, and Cornell's team earned the third-highest score. Five gold medals were awarded by the judges based on the scoring.
Cornell Dining sent Kevin Grant, Matt Seeber, Greggory Rogers, and Josh Holden, shown here left to right, to the event. Thanks to UMass Amherst for their photos!
Teams were provided a mystery "Market Basket" of ingredients from which they needed to produce an appetizer, an entree, and a dessert, and could optionally produce a buffet item as well.
The contestants had two hours to produce the first three courses, and an additional hour to produce the buffet item. Four servings of each course had to be plated individually, and one serving of the buffet item for twelve had to be plated, as well.
Our team presented a Branzino Two-Ways, poached branzino with gremolata and a corn-crusted croquette with herbed arugula puree, and lemon balm and shrimp tortellini with vegetable cream; a Spiced Duck Breast, pan-roasted duck breast with fruit gastrique, and a gingered rice and mung bean pilaf with kohlrabi and carrot purees; and a Panna Cotta, vanilla bean panna cotta with carrot cake Madeleine and crumbles with white chocolate raspberry ganache as the three plated courses. Their buffet course was a Seared Cauliflower Steak accompanied with pan-roasted tri-tip, potato and heirloom bean ragout, and sauce bordelaise.
Entries were judged based on uniqueness and how challenging they were. Chef Kevin Grant tells us the team dove into the uniqueness factor by taking the popcorn from the market basket, which most teams popped, and grinding it to make breading.