LINCOLNWOOD, Ill. (CBS) — A college student from Lincolnwood is getting ready for finals, but they have nothing to do with his pre-med studies at Princeton University.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports, Ricky Silberman, 20, is putting his science background to work in the kitchen. He has been named a finalist in a national cooking contest, sponsored by the renowned Kosher food company, Manischewitz.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports

He calls the contest, “’Iron Chef’ for Jewish mothers and me.”

His winning recipe “Mod Matzo ball soup,” is a modern twist on a family tradition.

“My grandparents were all Polish Holocaust survivors, and so their traditions – their foods, their customs – became our traditions. One of those was my grandma’s matzo ball soup which she made for us every Friday night when we were younger, and when she got a little older, my mom took over making the soup and I took over making the matzo balls,” Silberman said.

Silberman will compete against four other finalists, preparing his recipe at the Manischewitz Cook-Off in New York on March 28. The grand prize is $25,000 in kitchen appliances and cash.

Win or lose, Silberman says, he is having a ball being in the contest and introducing all of his friends to his matzo balls.

Watch & Listen LIVE