Blogs

The Chef Coat

The other day a very good friend of mine and I were having a conversation. He is an accomplished chef, holding prestigious awards from his years of competition within the culinary world. We were discussing the challenges one faces in a world where anyone can put on a white jacket and call themselves "chef". We spoke of how many of our students at one time or another have been disappointed and disillusioned by instructors who taught classes claiming the title of chef without ever having earned it.

Unfortunately, this is all to common and you may have experienced it yourself.

category: 
Professional Culinary Program

Food Safety and the Blackout

The recent blackout may have affected the foods in your refrigerator and freezer. The refrigerator will keep food safely cold for about 4 hours if it is unopened. A full freezer will hold the temperature for approximately 48 hours (24 hours if it is half full) if the door remains closed.

Time and temperature abuse is the number one cause for bacteria growth and food borne illnesses. Here are some guidelines to follow:

Refrigerator:

Cold foods such as potato salad, macaroni salad must be thrown out after 6 hours.

category: 
Cooking Culinary Basics

Nicaragua

I have a personal connection to Nicaragua as mother was born there. Her family presence dates back to the original European settlers, they hold the distinction of being the founding fathers of this uniquely beautiful country. I have spent my summers there since I was 15, I have seen the country go through much upheaval, suffer much pain and yet, it always ends up in the same place. It doesn’t change. The social and political views of this lush environment hamper the country’s ability to move forward.

category: 
Cooking International

For the Love of Food

I always know when spring comes around. You see we have a mourning dove couple that nests right inside our foyer. Every year they return around Valentine's day and by the time spring officially arrives we have two babies that have already fled the nest. I feel so blessed to be able to watch the fledglings grow and go. And I have to say thankfully my mother in law lives in Miami because she would look at them and say, "hmmm, with a little garlic and salt we'd have a fabulous meal!"

category: 
Cooking Culinary Basics

The Scent of an Orange

My yard is brimming with oranges, tangerines and Meyer lemons. The trees are heavy with fruit and they are so happy it’s raining. And so am I. I love the rain, the sound, the smell and how it heals and cleanses everything it touches. We all need a good washing every now and then. I hope you’ve stepped into the rain and enjoyed the blessings it brings to each and every one of us.

I’m sure you’ve noticed how the prices of food and gas are rising. Are you reacting to the increases by purchasing more processed foods?

category: 
Cooking Gourmet

Reflections on Food and Cooking

A new year prompts reflection and I have written a few thoughts on food and cooking I'd like to share with you.

On Food...

My philosophy about food is a simple one – we must always understand that something has sacrificed its life for our sustenance and it is our obligation to honor it in the highest manner we can. Food is both spiritual and magical, all encompassing and every changing.

category: 
Cooking Culinary Basics

The Chef Knife

A Chef’s knife is an all-purpose knife used for chopping, slicing, and mincing; its blade is usually between 8 and 14 inches long. Chef knives are the workhorse of the kitchen; if you can only have one good knife, this is the one to have. The best chef’s knives are made of high-carbon stainless steel which keeps its edge longer and won’t rust or discolor. Another metal commonly used in the making of chef’s knives is carbon steel. This metal is softer, making it easier to sharpen as they go dull more easily.

category: 
Cooking Culinary Basics

The Story of Salt

Kosher salt is a coarse grain, additive free salt. When you look at the grains they resemble little rectangles. This allows the salt to adhere to whatever it is added. Kosher salt has a cleaner, pure salt taste and chefs like it because the coarser texture allows you to control the salting process better, you’ll also have less of a propensity to over salt. You use kosher salt in the same manner as iodized salt, if a recipe calls for 1 teaspoon, you use 1 teaspoon. Kosher salt is the only salt I use for cooking and baking(although some bakers would argue this point).
category: 
Cooking Culinary Basics

Busan Korea

The hustle and bustle of the marketplace moves you like the wind, there is no time to remain stationary. The throngs of humanity will either propel you forward or backward, all based upon their whim. Towering skyscrapers housing couture salons are surrounded by makeshift eateries, lined uniformly along the corridor, each proprietor reaching for those who pass by.

category: 
Cooking International

Kids Love to Cook and Bake Too

It has been said that art of cooking in the home, passing of recipes from one generation to the next, is becoming a lost art. However, the benefits of cooking with your kids are well worth the effort.

According to Susan Moores, MS, RD, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association, there are several amazing long and short term benefits: It encourages kids to try healthy foods. Kids feel like they are accomplishing something and contributing to the family. Kids are more likely to sit down to a family meal when they helped prepare it.

category: 
Youth Cooking/Baking Y2
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