Michigan’s culinary professionals have been gaining popularity recently thanks to the help of a popular television show and an even more popular television personality.
Hell’s Kitchen Chef Gordon Ramsay — who has also been awarded a legendary 16 Michelin stars in his culinary career — recently gave praise to two of Michigan’s most prominent up-and-coming chefs.
Kimberly Ann Ryan and Aaron Smock were featured on the show’s Season 16 Premiere titled, “When the Wall Comes Tumbling Down.” Ryan represented the red women’s team while Smock was part of the blue (losing) men’s team.
“I did this for my 4-year-old daughter,” said Ryan, who studied at the Culinary Institute of Michigan. “I want to show her you don’t have to work at a job that you hate. You can find something you love to do.”
Ryan’s signature dish that brought her so much praise from the famous Chef Ramsay was her seared scallops with mango jalapeno salsa and spicy toasted rice crispies.
Although Atlantic sea scallops can have large shells (up to 9 inches in length), and Bay scallops grow to about 4 inches, it’s not too often one of the most famous (or infamous, depending on who you ask) chefs in the world tastes, enjoys, and praises a scallop dish.
“It’s delicious,” said Ramsay. “5 out of 5.”
Another chef who actually got his start on the Hell’s Kitchen program is on his way to Michigan and other states in hopes of bringing his dishes to the masses.
According to Times Leader, Chef Michael Langdon appeared on the Season 11 of the Fox reality program and cooked alongside Ramsay as well.
Langdon graduated from Coughlin High School and the Le Cordon Bleu Institute of Culinary Arts in Pittsburgh, and has since traveled the U.S. as a professional chef. He began his career working for Cameron Mitchell Restaurants and helped create new restaurants in Kentucky, Ohio, and Michigan.
“It’s been amazing so far,” said the 37-year-old chef. “My mom can come here and eat my food now.”
After Langdon’s travels, he plans on running his own place in Pittston, Pennsylvania.