or Connect
ChefTalk.com › Articles
470 article submissions by the ChefTalk.com community.

Pumpkin Filling

by: Ruben Urias Nothing stokes the creative fires of home cooks more than the holidays. Every year, the adventurous rush out to buy the freshest “this” or organic “that.” Yet, without fail, the one item most synonymous with the holidays gets relegated to simple canned-form. The noble pumpkin does not deserve this fate. This bias against the pumpkin almost seems unfair. While many a home cook have set their homes, yards, and eyebrows ablaze while trying to submerge a 10 lb. ball of game bird into a boiling pot of oil, many of these same people balk at the idea... read more

Food vs Service

  I decided to write this post because of a conversation I had with my sous chef.  He and I were discussing the merits of a restaurant that had great food, but not so great service.  While he and I both agreed that the food was the important part of the equation and that it can make up for bad service, we had some coworkers who did not agree.  This got my curiosity going so I decided to find out what people thought on the matter.  I did a little research asking professionals in the culinary field, friends, and various other people.      In all, eighty-three people... read more

Pan Sauces

Many people don't know what they are missing when they cook something in the pan then discard what's left.  Those are the most scrumptious bits stuck on the bottom loaded with flavor and are perfect for making pan sauces. In a few simple steps I will give you the keys to making your own pan sauces. The fist step is to cook whatever it is your are cooking in a large enough saute pan to hold your liquid for your sauce.  Use enough fat (oil, butter or a combo of both) to cook your protein, but not so much that you have a puddle of fat left in your pan.  If this is the... read more

The Secret Guide to Culinary Career

Culinary Cooking Career Guide Those entering into a culinary career need to know the ins-and-outs of the industry to be successful. To do this, a person needs to know what culinary professionals do, where they obtain training as well as where they can find employment. It is important to keep in mind that there are different types of culinary professionals, meaning that the training they receive will somewhat differ from others in the same industry.  What is a Culinary Professional? Most times, a culinary professional is referred to as a chef; however, this... read more

Tips for Americans on Eating Out in France

Here's what I've learned from experience, and a little research: GARCON! Calling the waiter, "Garçon!" is considered rude. You can address the wait staff as "monsieur," for men (meaning "sir") and the female waitresses as, "madame" (or "mademoiselle" for a younger woman).  FRENCH WAIT STAFF. A note about the wait staff in France: being a waiter is considered a dignified profession unlike the U.S. where one may wait tables simply to make money until they get a big break in another profession (like arts or theatre). Most Parisian waiters are dressed more... read more

Gramercy Tavern

      Very fortunate to cross paths with Gramercy Tavern's Nancy Olson. What followed was an exchange of emails that led to an invitation to spend the day in one of New York's (arguably, the nation's) most noteworthy restaurants. What follows is a snapshot of the day, from morning muffins, to a trip to the market, to family meal with the Tavern crew.   Blueberry Muffins and just-squeezed orange juice greet us                    Prep work starts early; a quick look in the kitchen before heading to the market               found a flurry of... read more

Japanese Knives 101

There are several wiki articles here presenting classic basics of knives, but thus far they’re all out of date. Something has changed lately — something big. That’s the advent of high-quality Japanese knives. This wiki is intended to give you some fundamental information about these knives. There are a number of people on this website who know a great deal about Japanese cutlery, who ought to join in and fix or add things. Table Of Contents [if anyone can figure out how to make this clickable to skim through, please do so!] What’s The... read more

Burgatory - Behind the Burger

Behind the Burger: Burgatory, Pittsburgh by Jim Berman CCI     Is the twelve-course degustation menu going by way of Baked Alaska and Tomatoes in Aspic? Perhaps, so. Perhaps the local movement will embed and hang tough; the way we ate 200 years’ ago is new again. Bold plates of quality ingredients is the rage. Only this time around, it is because we want to, not just because we have to; going back to our roots, as if we ever are able to abandon them, if you will. Roots, by definition, provide footing, vital life-giving juices and at the end of the day, a... read more

Fast Food Chinese

  Panda Palace, Jade Garden, #1 China, Noodle House. Chinese restaurants dot every neighborhood, across every demographic, around every socioeconomic pitfall and paradise. They can be tattered looking, plexiglass-enclosed safe houses to brightly lit, neon glistening meccas of General Tso, Pekin Duck and Mu Shu. The menus are always ridiculous in depth, far-reaching and spread across the culinary landscape to squeeze every possible ingredient into a stir-fried confluence of deliciousness. And they are inexplicable. They are staffed by warrior-like operators that... read more

The 5 Facets of a Good Restaurant

        The 5 Facets of A Good Restaurant Jim Berman   A good restaurant is not just about the food. It is about the experience. The experience is about service, the surroundings, the food and a bit of the colorful panache that gets served with each dish. And a bit about the way a titillating dining experience makes you feel after you leave.   1. Do I want to go in there? The cut-out, strip-malled, fake stucco and neon green trim is no more inviting than going to the proctologist with your girlfriend. The McRestaurant landscape is plum-full of... read more

ChefTalk.com › Articles