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Student Cooking Competition Heats Up Daly's Kitchen

By David Pavlak ’13, MA ’14

Brian Schaurer ’13 was named the winner of “Rider Student Top Chef – The Savory Edition,” an event sponsored by 107.7 The Bronc. Schaurer’s dish, pollo con gnocchi, won over the students’ taste buds, as he was declared the winner of the competition, which was held in Daly’s Dining Hall on Nov. 14, 2013. 

Beginning in October, students submitted original breakfast, lunch or dinner recipes as entries into the competition. Selecting the best recipes based on originality, creativity and cooking simplicity, the judges then invited the student chefs who had created the qualifying recipes to participate in the competition. The chefs cooked for Rider students under the supervision of the Dining Services staff and then students voted for their favorite.

Schaurer’s dish started with a panfried chicken cutlet, which was then topped with prosciutto, spinach and mozzarella and served atop a bed of fried gnocchi tossed with a roasted pepper and Sriracha sauce.

“The competition seems to get tougher every year as students continually try to outdo each other in the kitchen,” says John Mozes, the general manager of 107.7 The Bronc. “We’ve certainly moved from the most simplistic kitchen recipes to more elaborate culinary creations made with a unique blend of ingredients, as is the case with this year’s three finalists.”

The winning dish was featured at PJ’s Pancake House in Princeton during the month of January, with a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the dish benefiting the American Cancer Society. Schaurer also won an Apple iPad Mini, and all of the winners received various gift certificates and Bronc Bucks.

Justin Giachetti’s seared sesame ahi tuna with sushi rice and cucumber sunomono salad claimed second place, while Danielle Lackovic’s maple apple chicken mac and cheese finished in third.

“It’s been a great way to unite the University through our shared passion for food and make Daly Dining Hall a social gathering place and not just another place to eat on campus,” Mozes says.

Photos from the competition

Top Chef

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