Saturday, June 19, 2010
So with one year of Culinary School under my belt I can tell you with most certainty that it is not hard to cook for yourself. I may have had to learn some fancy knife skills and some French techniques I may never need to use. For you it basically breaks down to some easy things to know... I mean easy and stop rolling your eyes, yes I can see you... I have cameras in your house, office, etc...
1. Buy a good knife... when I say good it doesn't necessary has to be a gazillion dollars. Make sure you keep it sharp, very sharp. A very sharp knife is the safest knife you can own. Ask me how to sharpen a knife, I can help you. Learning how to use a knife will open up a lot of options to you in regards to using fresh vegetables and fruits. The best way to learn about knife skills is watch videos and buy a sack of potatoes or other vegetables/fruits. For some awesome videos I would recommend:
Chef Tom videos on YouTube.
2. Buy a cookbook, yes I know for you guys it may seem kind of weird, but come on you will go in to a Borders and buy other things without shame, you can buy a cookbook. So what kind of cookbook should you buy? Make sure it deals with a certain cuisine that you enjoy. Don't just look at how long the recipes are, this will freak you out and I can always help you break it down appropriately. Cookbooks work because you can always substitute items and techniques to make it as easy as need be. As for the above picture, ummm no offense but you can cook 90% without a microwave.
3. Make time to cook, I know your busy but you can make time to watch 8 hours of reality TV each week you can block off time to cook. This means being proactive. For those who made need some clarification being proactive means to plan ahead... yes ahead. This may be a new concept but it works when cooking for one and also it can help you at the grocery store. Yes, you will need to learn more about the grocery store other than where the frozen pizza isle is located.
There are more than just three step to learning how to cook well but these are the baby steps you will need to move in the right direction. I know a lot of my readers are women but this is more directed towards guys but ladies maybe forward this to your husbands or boyfriends. Tell them cook me dinner and I will just wear an apron to bed tonight.
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
I can't believe it but I have completed my four term at The Midwest Culinary Institute. I can remember it was just a year ago when I made the decision to attend culinary school and become a wanna be Chef. So nervous and wondering if I will even make it through the first term more less one year. It was not what I expected, and exactly what I expected to be honest. I can still remember my first class when the instructor asked what every ones culinary aspirations. Almost half of the people said they wanted to be a celebrity chef of some sort on the Food Network. To be honest I don't think most of them even made it through Cooking 1. Myself I believe I said, "That I hoped one day long time from now I hope I can feel confident in calling myself a Chef." That is still a long way away, don't let the chef hat fool you, because I think it will be years before I will ever feel ok with calling myself a Chef.
So what have I learned in one year? Well I have learned how to make homemade mayo, how to make a perfect Bearnaise sauce, and how to roast a chicken. I have also learned how to accept the fact that you will cut yourself and it will hurt and you will burn yourself and that will also hurt. This is a reality when you surround yourself by fire and knives. But it was fire and knives that attracted me to cooking as a kid, it made me feel grown up and it made me feel powerful. I would have to say I still feel that power when I hone my knifes or flambe so high I don't have eyebrows for a week.
It has certainly been a journey so far but I am making sure to enjoy the ride.
Now go cook something.