Today was a typical day in Culinary School. It’s become completely normal- with class from roughly noon to seven- to spend the majority of each day in the kitchen. Not sure of any place I’d rather be, actually. Perhaps a garden would give it a run for its money, but that’s about it.
But I realized while having coffee with a new friend this morning that this myriad of kitchen hours seems excessive to most people. So I decided to share what a normal day in the kitchen looks like for us. Regional American Cuisine with a focus on Coastal areas was the game plan…
Knife practical skills assessment: 10 minutes, small dice, red pepper. Graded on technique, use of product/waste, accuracy, precision, cleanliness, knife sharpness and handling.
Roma tomatoes, tossed with olive oil, salt, garlic, thyme, rosemary and roasted in a low oven all afternoon. Flavors concentrate making even an out of season tomato delicious.
Breakdown a large, fresh salmon into fillets, saving trim for fish stock, and create an indoor wood chip smoker and spice rub blend.
Make a vinaigrette to marinade red and yellow peppers as a sweet complement for the smokey salmon.
Produce an incredible herb-forward flavored tartare from this beautiful tuna fillet… knife precision paramount.
Firm polenta is cut into rounds and fried into a crisp base for seared scallops, served with roasted red pepper remoulade… yes, the knife practical peppers being put to good use.
Baked oysters two ways for comparison…
The largest pieces of focaccia I’ve ever eaten, and a kalamata fougasse.
Lovely plated dessert of peanut butter bars, salted caramel, dark chocolate sauce and crisp chocolate cake crumbs… so lovely in fact that a photo escaped me. Apologies to my fellow sweet lovers.
Plate, serve, eat, critique, clean up… and lecture on wine. All in a day’s