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Knowing your producte and gathering knowledge

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Earlier this week I had a discussion with my cuisine teacher and he told me that he was very irritated and upset because a lot of the students today lack the will to understand the product that they are working with. That we are simply putting something up on a plate and making it look nice without considering the work and function of the different products that we have used. Something I can imagine beeing a commun mistake know a days considering all the perfect plates that we see on Instagram and what not. I would like to know as much as possible of the products that I use, so that I can use them in the best way possible. But there is a lot to go through. I know my self as beeing quite impatient, and wanting to know and do everything at the same time and I get somehow overwhelmed by all the things I'd like to know about. (Do you understand the feeling haha?) 

 

What I actually wanted to know is HOW do you guys gather knowlege and get to know the products that you use in the kitchen? Which kind of potato is best for maching and which for making fries?....and so on.... Were should I begin? I know ofcourse that using the product is one of the best ways, but I'm just curious to know how different people work. 

 

Thanks for your answers :D :D 

 

(Sorry for bad spelling, English is not my original language and I have spent a couple of months in France now so my head is a mess) 

post #2 of 3

The kitchen is only the end of the journey for ingredients.  Go out talk to farmers, fisherman, butchers okay?  If you want the best ingredients, you need to know it all. 

post #3 of 3

Go to a farm and an orchard when different vegetables are in season. While you are there talk to the farmer if you can about what he grows and  why. Go visit a butcher and talk about the processes involved in butchery and aging beef. Visit fishermen to see what fresh fish looks like and understand how they catch, store, transport and sell them. 

Read books about food, the growing, production and preparation. 

Visit different grocery stores, mainstream and ethnic markets to see what is sold, when and why. 

When you are at home, try canning your own foods so you can see what is involved. Try baking at home and researching different flours, fats and liquids and how they work together. Try different preserving methods for different foods. Make some beer and wine. 

Work with different chefs to see the different methods you can use to prepare good quality products. 

All of this takes time. You can not know it all at once. What your chef is upset about is that no one show any interest in these things. They just want to make a pretty plate. The point is not to know it all but to recognize that there is much to understand before the food goes on the plate. That takes time, dedication and effort. 

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