Michael Ek of Bartlett a Cook of the Week Challenge finalist

  • Michael Ek of Bartlett at his cooking station for the finale for the Daily Herald 2016 Cook of the Week Challenge at the Westin Chicago Northwest in Itasca.

      Michael Ek of Bartlett at his cooking station for the finale for the Daily Herald 2016 Cook of the Week Challenge at the Westin Chicago Northwest in Itasca. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Ek's Scallops, risotto and spaghetti squash.

    Ek's Scallops, risotto and spaghetti squash.

  • Asian-grilled Cornish Game Hen with a side of Vodka Stir-fried Farro.

    Asian-grilled Cornish Game Hen with a side of Vodka Stir-fried Farro.

 
 
Updated 11/22/2016 5:03 PM

Age: 54

Occupation: Attorney

 

Inspiring moment: Ek recalls watching a young Charlie Trotter in "Kitchen Sessions," a TV show on PBS in the late 1990s. "I remember watching Charlie make duck confit and being amazed."

Faced: Amanda Landers in Round 1, Daniel Imburgia in Round 2.

Round 1 ingredients: Jumbo sea scallops, spaghetti squash, portobello mushrooms and rosemary.

Round 2 ingredients: Cornish game hens, Absolut vodka, celery root and farro.

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