Campus Life

KAMU Debuts ‘Aggie Chef Showdown’

The original cooking competition show featuring four Aggie Dining chefs is now available to stream on YouTube.
By KAMU-TV June 18, 2024

four men in aprons stand behind a counter loaded down with various cooking ingredients
(Left to right) Chefs Will Weaver, Leo Lozano, Ray Soendjaya and Demetrius Williams craft unique recipes inspired by childhood favorites in KAMU’s new cooking competition show, “Aggie Chef Showdown.”



Aggieland now has its own cooking competition: “Aggie Chef Showdown” is now available to stream anytime on KAMU’s YouTube channel.

“Aggie Chef Showdown” brings together KAMU and Aggie Dining for a mouthwatering exploration of cooking at Texas A&M University. In this 30-minute special, watch as four of Aggie Dining’s best chefs compete to decide who has the best recipe. Will the winning dish be an elevated play on shrimp and grits? How about deconstructed enchiladas? Maybe Indonesian fried rice and pork skewers? Or will it be Maryland-style crab cakes?

Plus, after watching “Aggie Chef Showdown,” you can make the recipes yourself! Keep reading to learn more about trying your hand in the kitchen.

We put this competition together as a companion to “The Great American Recipe,” a PBS cooking show now in its third season. Watch Mondays at 8 p.m. on KAMU beginning June 17 and read on to learn more about the show.

Watch Aggie Chef Showdown

With a focus on family and the emotions of gathering to share a meal, the chefs bring the flavors of their childhood and share recipes that remind them of home. With an hour on the clock and three hungry judges waiting, which dish will win?

The competition is free to stream on our YouTube channel at any time.

Meet The Chefs

Aggie Dining put four of its best chefs to the test in this competition. Get to know them here:

Demetrius Williams, Executive Sous Chef, Aggie Dining Catering

Chef Demetrius cooks because it’s a way for him to serve others and make them happy. Cooking wasn’t always his passion, but after going to vocational culinary school, he never looked back. “We didn’t always have a lot of food growing up,” Chef Demetrius said, “so I know what a good meal means to people.” On campus, Chef Demetrius works in catering, making food for hundreds of events a year.

Leo Lozano, Executive Chef, Aggie Dining Catering

Chef Leo has been cooking for 20 years and loves how culture can be shown through food. “Cooking says a lot about your personality,” Chef Leo said. “It’s very expressive.” He got into cooking by watching his mom do a lot with simple staples like rice and beans. Today, he’s the head chef of campus catering operations, serving thousands of people a year.

Ray Soendjaya, Executive Chef, Commons Dining Hall

Chef Ray represents residential dining in this competition. His cooking journey started as a seven-year-old in Indonesia, experimenting with meals for he and his brother. As a teen, he loved Wendy’s curly fries, but didn’t have enough money to buy them. “So I got a job there and got free fries every night – I loved it!” Chef Ray said. He hasn’t worked in any other industry since and loves to bring the diverse flavors of his home country to his food.

Will Weaver, Executive Sous Chef, Texas A&M Athletics Performance Nutrition

Chef Will brings a taste of Maryland to College Station. As a child, he learned how to cook by watching his mom. “Our family always came together over food,” Chef Will said. “It meant a lot.” Lessons from his mom made him fall in love with cooking and he decided to go to culinary school. After he graduated, he found himself at A&M, where today he feeds athletes as part of the performance nutrition team.

Make The Featured Recipes

Each chef brought their love for cooking to the competition — and some nostalgic flavors. The recipe each chef chose reminded them of home and family.

After watching “Aggie Chef Showdown,” make the recipes for yourself! Chefs Demetrius, Leo, Ray and Will shared their flavors with the judges and now they’re sharing them with you.

Scallops And Polenta

Shrimp and grits… but elevated. Chef Demetrius brought familial flavors to his dish, including topping things off with a nod to his Grandmother’s Sweet Potato Casserole.

Make Chef Demetrius’ Scallops And Polenta

Deconstructed Chicken Enchiladas

Rice and beans were staples for Chef Leo growing up and he elevates those ingredients in his deconstructed dish. There are a TON of flavors here to enjoy.

Make Chef Leo’s Deconstructed Chicken Enchiladas

Indonesian Fried Rice And Pork Skewers

Traditional Indonesian components are at play for Chef Ray. Pork skewers were his favorite as a child and he reproduces them here. A runny-yolk fried egg takes this dish over the top.

Make Chef Ray’s Indonesian Fried Rice And Pork Skewers

Crab Cakes And Succotash

If you want these crab cakes to truly be Maryland-style, get ready to buy a lot of crab! But feel free to adjust the ratio of crab to cracker to fit your budget: you’ll get a great crab cake regardless.

Make Chef Will’s Maryland-Style Crab Cakes And Succotash


Learn More About “Aggie Chef Showdown,” Aggie Dining and the new season of “The Great American Recipe” at

This article originally appeared on the KAMU TV FM website.

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