Tommy Fay of Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology was among the finalists at this year's Knorr Student Chef of the Year.
The theme of this year’s competition was ‘The Future of Irish Cuisine’ and focused on celebrating Irish ingredients and cooking methods. The competition was judged by a panel comprising Unilever Food Solutions’ business development chef, Mark McCarthy; guest judge and San Pellegrino World Young Chef of the Year, Mark Moriarty; and Michael Gantley, chef lecturer, Athlone Institute of Technology.
The finalists competed in a cook off hosted by Athlone Institute of Technology at the weekend. Students were challenged to create a starter using sustainable Irish seafood and a main course celebrating Irish venison. Students were also asked to demonstrate an understanding of the challenges of culinary sustainability, food waste management and allergen awareness.
Finalist Tommy Fay is pictured, along with his cook-off creations. The winner was Jody Seed, representing Southern Regional College in Newry.
Celebrating its 19th year in 2016, Knorr Student Chef of the Year, the most celebrated student chef competition, is open to catering colleges, institutes of technology, and training centres across the island of Ireland.
Speaking at the awards presentation, Mark McCarthy said: “The Knorr Student Chef of the Year competition is an ideal platform for the country’s brightest talents to not only demonstrate their culinary flair and talent, but to also develop new skills that are certain to serve them well as they embark on what I am confident will be long, successful careers.
“The greatest challenge for everyone in the food service industry, and indeed those starting out, is that it constantly changes. This is why we ask our student chef finalists to not only think about the story behind their dishes, but to also tackle some of the current issues that are facing the industry, whether this is cutting down on food waste in the kitchen or meeting legislation changes. I’m happy to report that all our students created wonderful menus this year, while also meeting our challenge excellently. I feel inspired and confident that the future of our foodservice industry is in safe hands.”