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Limerick Student Chef Bangaly Doumbouya wins Bronze at National Cook-Off

Bangaly Doumbouya (centre) being presented with his Bronze medal. Audrey Crone, Executive Chef Ireland at Unilever Food Solutions also pictured (left)

Limerick Student Chef Bangaly Doumbouya wins Bronze at National Cook-Off

Bangaly Doumbouya, representing Limerick Institute of Technology, has been awarded third place at this year’s KNORR Student Chef of the Year 2019, after an exciting two-hour cook-off at Waterford Institute of Technology.

Bangaly went up against seven other young student chefs from across the island of Ireland to cook up a storm and create two plates. The theme of this year’s competition, ‘Street on a Plate: a street food feast inspired by the food trucks, street stalls and farmers markets of Ireland,’ celebrates the evolving palette of the Irish population and its influence on the Irish food market. Students are marked for their creativity and interpretation of the theme as well as the presentation of each dish, food waste management and allergen awareness.

Bangaly Doumbouya plated two dishes for the judge tasting. His first plate was a ‘Madtarbark with Prawns and Crispy King Prawn Skewers Rice Vinegar Gel/Chilli’ dish and the second plate consisted of ‘Sticky Chicken Thigh with Noodles and Stir-Fried Vegetables.’


The inspiration for each dish came from Asian cuisine. The plates contained traditional elements but the overall presentation provided a contemporary twist.

Commenting on the experience Bangaly Doumbouya said, “It has been an exciting day of cooking and a great learning experience. Personally, getting feedback from the judges and seeing my fellow competitor’s interpretation of the theme.”

Lee McDonagh, Technological University Dublin – Tallaght Campus, took the overall prize while Daniel Hartigan of Waterford Institute of technology placed second.

Impelled by the theme Lee impressed the judges with two tantalising dishes of Lobster maki, sushi, avocado, yuzu and caviar,’ and a contemporary presentation of the classic ‘Fish and Chips with a warm tartar emulsion.’


Speaking about the competition, Audrey Crone, Executive Chef Ireland at Unilever Food Solutions said, “This year marks my first KNORR Student Chef of the Year competition. The talent demonstrated by each student chef is a real testament to the training centres and institutes of Ireland and made quite an impression on the judging panel. Each competitor displayed great chefmanship and creativity in the preparation and cooking of each of their plates.

“The hospitality and food industry in Ireland is undergoing a time of upheaval with chef shortages. Today’s competition assured me that with the oncoming training chefs, the industry is in good hands. It’s also an exciting time for graduating chefs to forage their professional careers,” she added.

This year’s competition was judged by a panel comprising Unilever’s Audrey Crone and special guest judge Bobby Kerr, entrepreneur, businessman and broadcaster and Lorain Walsh, Chef Lecturer, Waterford Institute of Technology.

As well as the KNORR Student Chef of the Year title, the winner has a unique London food tour, sampling what the UK capital city has to offer in terms of produce, street food and Michelin experiences.

Other KNORR Student Chef of the Year 2019 finalists include:

  • Nadia Rainey, South Eastern Regional College
  • Kevin Buchanan, Letterkenny Institute of Technology
  • Gerard Fallon, Athlone Institute of Technology
  • Keith Craig, North West Regional College

The KNORR Student Chef of the Year competition is the biggest competition of its kind in Ireland and allows young, up-and-coming chefs the chance to demonstrate their talent and culinary flair in front of leading national and international food professionals.


In 2015, LIT student Jill Holmes stirred up a real culinary success after being crowned KNORR Student Chef of the Year 2015 after a thrilling cook-off hosted by Belfast Metropolitan College at its state-of-the-art Titanic Quarter Campus. 


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Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.