AMHERST, Mass. – Matthia Accurso, a chef from UMass Catering, earned a gold medal during the Culinary Challenge Contest held at the National Association of College and University Food Services (NACUFS) Mid-Atlantic/Northeast Regional Conference on March 19-22 at Rutgers University in Brunswick, N.J.
Accurso’s winning recipe was lobster with kale lobster tortellini, sauteed celery root and citrus glazed carrots. The judges were impressed with his skill in using the entire lobster in a delicious way.
Chefs from Yale University, University of Connecticut, University of New Hampshire, University of Rochester, University at Buffalo, Amherst College, Binghamton University, Rhode Island School of Design and the State University of New York at Geneseo took part in the cooking contest.
“The competition was a lot of fun and I feel very honored to win, given how talented the other chefs were,” said Accurso. “I really appreciate the help from Executive Chef Willie Sng and Chef Tony Jung who came by while I was practicing to give me their opinions and feedback, which allowed me to really hone my dish and create a gold medal plate.”
“We are proud of our culinary skills of our chefs and their teamwork shows it. I am looking forward to seeing Chef Matthia compete in the national conference. Go UMass,” said Ken Toong, executive director of Auxiliary Enterprises at UMass Amherst.
Accurso will compete against the other regional winners at the national competition in July at the NACUFS National Conference in Baltimore.