Grinnell Chef Wins Regional Competition

Monday, Mar. 31, 2014 3:36 pm

Scott Turley, executive chef, will take his award-winning lobster dish to a national collegiate dining services competition this summer.

Turley topped eight other Midwestern chefs last month at the National Association of College and University Food Services’ Culinary Challenge at Michigan State University.

He will compete against five other chefs in July at the national competition in Baltimore, Md. Winners will receive cash prizes and a medal for outstanding food preparation and presentation.

“We’re very proud of chef Scott’s accomplishments in this area,” says Dick Williams, director of dining services. “His talents represent the extraordinary culinary team at Grinnell.”

Turley says he’s training to win the national competition.

“I practiced this dish making lobster strudel with lobster sauce, butter poached lobster tail, sautéed spinach with fennel, honey glazed carrots, and tournedos of beef with Jack Daniels sauce,” Turley says. “The strudel proved to be a challenge because you cannot use an oven, so I created one with the induction units and skillets by turning the induction unit upside down.” 

Williams called the technique the “Turley flip,” says Turley.

“This seemed to create quite the buzz as cooking this way is not normal for the competition, but my time working with the Boy Scouts paid off as it works really well,” Turley says.

The Daily Meal, a food and drink website, ranked Grinnell 15 out of 60 on its list of best colleges for food last year. Grinnell has 11 chefs who are certified by the American Culinary Federation, a professional organization for chefs and cooks.