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What makes up a great Chef Uniform?

Take a peek inside any commercial kitchen around the country and you’ll most likely see at least somebody wearing something that resembles a traditional chef’s uniform.  This includes a white jacket, toque, and checkered pants.  This traditional uniform dates back to the mid-19th century and is a symbol of professionalism and pride within the culinary community.   Many features of a traditional chef coat were born out of necessity of the job. Today’s kitchens are filled with chef coats in a variety of colors, but traditionally they are white, and it is only recently... read more

Bordeaux Wines

Bordeaux, (Bor-DOH), is one of the world’s best wines.  But Bordeaux’s geography, nomenclature, grape varieties, and outdated classification system is confusing enough to drive you to drink.  Hmmmm.  Maybe that’s the plan? Let’s see if we can make this wonderful wine more mentally palatable. Bordeaux is a wine, a city and a territory.  Bordeaux is a large region in southwest France named after its principal city.  Bordeaux is also the name loosely applied to any wine emanating from within its borders.  In France, wines are named for the geographical area from which... read more

Baking Bread-Making a Classic Batard

  • by PeteModerator

  Awhile ago I had promised myself to do more baking to regain some of those skills I lost due to not using them much over the last many years. While I have done more baking since I started this blog, I haven’t done nearly the amount I want, so I’ve made that promise to myself again and hopefully will stick with it.   The bread I baked the other day is the first loaf I’ve baked in quite some time, and I realized just how rusty those skills become without use. Don’t get me wrong, it turned out fine, but I do need a little work on my skills to get my breads to the... read more

How To Cook Fish N Chips

There are a few things that I need to say regarding one of my country's most favored foods. Dating back to the seventeenth century, fish and chips have had a long standing as Britain's best loved fast food. Fish and chips are not served in newspaper. The news paper thing is from days gone by. The reason for the use of yesterday's news to serve this fine product was not just our century old tradition of recycling but of course cost. Being that newspaper print is a little toxic people started going off the concept of eating food from it. Cod & Chips! When I return home... read more

Drinking History-Fruit Shrubs

  • by PeteModerator

  A couple of weeks ago I posted about how we went grape picking and the numerous jars of jelly my wife made with them. I also mentioned that we had plenty of leftover grapes for pie making and for me to experiment with. For awhile now, I have had a renewed interest in making shrub, a classic colonial American drink with a long history. With all the extra grapes, now was the perfect time to experiment.   Shrubs can be categorized into alcoholic and non-alcoholic. The alcoholic versions are basically fruit and sugar infused brandy or rum. Nowadays, we would probably... read more

Tea 101: A Beginner's Guide Part I An Introduction to Tea

  • by PeteModerator

  If you had told me 1 ½ years ago that I would be writing a Beginner’s Guide to tea, I would have laughed.  To me, tea wasn’t a “thing.”  Sure I drank it when I went to Chinese or Japanese restaurants, or I’d brew up a fruity, herbal tea when I wasn’t feeling well during the long, cold winter months, and of course, during summer there is always a pitcher of iced tea in the fridge, but that was about the extent of tea in my life.  Then one day I wandered into a tea shop in the mall.  There, on the back wall, were tin after tin of loose leaf teas with names such as... read more

Milanese Creamy Pesto

Hi ho, TheBEEF! here with a simple Eyetalian style dish that is not as oily as standard pesto sauce. The number one complaint I get from a lot of people involving pesto is that it is too oily and it is messy etc... This is mostly true and many restaurants have removed Pesto from their menus because of such rumors and foolishness.   Now, (edit because it was longer ago than thought) thirteen years ago I was in Milan (northern Italy) and this crazy old Italian chef had a restaurant on the outskirts of the city and I made it a point to come to his restaurant. Well, I... read more

Red Wine And White Meat

The fourth Thursday of November will always be Thanksgiving but if you're an oenophile, it's the third Thursday that you look forward to.  That's when Beaujolais Nouveau, the vinicultural herald of the holiday season, is released.  Let's take a tour of Beaujolais before returning to this specific and festive wine.Beaujolais, (boh-zhuh-LAY), like most French wines, is named for the region of France, not the grape, from which it emanates.  Beaujolais is a 35 mile strip of granite hills, containing over 55,000 acres of vineyards, between the towns of Lyons and Macon in... read more

How Culinary Arts Teachers Decide What to Teach

How do Culinary Arts teachers decide what to teach? What we teach and how we teach are delineated by several factors:   Who is your employer? The availability of tools and equipment Time available for hands-on instruction Your budget Your skills Class composition Food allergies   Who is your employer?     Many schools particularly at the post-secondary level (especially if they’re part of a chain of schools like the Culinary Institute of America) will have a preexisting curriculum. What is a curriculum? A curriculum is a course of study. Most schools,... read more

Buttermilk A Recipes Homely Child

Only a mother would see her homely child as beautiful and only a devotee could love a glass of buttermilk. Thick and lumpy often with bits of butter, it oozes down the sides of an empty glass leaving a grainy film behind. But don't go screaming off into the night. There's more to this homely child than meets the eye. Lurking beneath the blemishes of what most believe to be the dairy family's black sheep is a vibrant, nutritious, and superb flavoring agent. There is no doubt that its name is disarming. In the early days, buttermilk was the milky liquid left from... read more

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