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Question for formally educated chefs

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I was just wondering if those who went to cooking school, such as the cul. inst. of America, could give me a quick breakdown of the kinds of texts you studied from.

for example, was there a class dedicated entirely to, say, sauces and marinades? I know, stupid question, but as I've said before, I'm a scientist so I tend to break things down and look at things in their pure form.

Thanks!

Question for admins: could I get a thumbs up smilie added? I'm all about the thumbs up. Thanks again!
I excel at sauteeing onions.
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I excel at sauteeing onions.
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post #2 of 8
You may be interested in this forum for some answers:

A Year Back At Culinary School - ChefTalk Cooking Forums

Not sure if you are considering going to a culinary school or just curious - but that forum gives all sorts of insights for people learning the trade.
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Nah, just curious. if I had to do it again.... maybe culinary school would have been a consideration. For me I didn't realize I love cooking until it was too late.

But see, I'm also a book guy. I've got masters degrees in science (organic chemistry) and business (MBA finance). I believe there's a tremendous amount to be learned form books, even if there's no instructor watching over your shoulder to guide you. So the types of books that make chefs what they are when they graduate is a huge part of the science of learning, IMO. There's also a number of parallels between chemistry and cooking... measure A, measure B, mix this, mix that, dilute heat them together, filter, analyze, multi-task several potentially dangerous situations at once.... etc.

Thanks for the link. I'll check it out!
I excel at sauteeing onions.
Reply
I excel at sauteeing onions.
Reply
post #4 of 8
If I remember correctly we used
  • Escoffier le guide culinaire
    • Professional Cooking Wayne Gisslen
    • Professional Baking Wayne Gisslen
  • Reay Tannahil Food in history
And some other sanitation books but this was the bulk as I recall
Also used though were On Food and Cooking Harold McGee
And the Larouuse Gastronomique
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
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My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
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post #5 of 8
Von-
Read Michael Ruhlman's wonderful book The Making of a Chef and you will get a real taste of what a culinary education is like. Then go on to his successive books about practicing chefs.

Mike
travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
excllent info chrose and mike. thanks!
I excel at sauteeing onions.
Reply
I excel at sauteeing onions.
Reply
post #7 of 8
You might also want to look at books by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg.

I work on a lot of the CIA textbooks, and I can't recommend them for lay cooks. It's not that they don't have good information; it's just that the assumption is that there will be an instructor to explain things more. After all, a textbook is meant to be used in the classroom/kitchen, with an "authority" to explain things more.

In the school I went to, we use Wayne Gisselen's books. Not much explanation there.

You'd probably be much better off with Harold McGee and Robert Wolke and Shirley Corriher, who explain the science behind cooking and baking.
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
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"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
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post #8 of 8
which edition of escoffier did you use at school? can you recommend the best?
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