Posts Tagged: France

Culinary Arts and The Famous Chefs of History Like Careme, Escoffier, Ranhofer and Julia Child

The French have been the leaders and are recognized as the innovators in the culinary arts scene since the beginning of time, and most of the famous chefs in history are French. The well known and famous chefs that are not French, nevertheless, are trained in the art of cooking with the classical French style.

Antoine Careme well known as the “King of Chefs and the Chef of Kings,” and who began as an abandoned child. It was Paris, in the 18th century, where Antoine Careme was left alone at the door step of a restrauteur, and became the father of “haute cuisine” in the 19th century which is the high art of French cooking. French statesman and Diplomat Talleyrand-Perigord, the future King George IV, Czar Alexander I, and James Rothschild a powerful banker, Careme was the Chef to these world leaders and aristocrats. Careme is well known for his famous writings on the art of cooking, included in the writings is the famed “The Art of French Cooking” or L’Art de la Cuisine Francaise. The masterpiece contains five volumes of information and knowledge on the history of French cooking, table settings, menu planning, recipes in the hundreds, and much more.

George Auguste Escoffier, who is also French, in the late 19th and early 20th century modernized Careme’s elaborate style of cuisine by his ingenious simplification of the food. With partner Cesar Ritz, and as a chef George Auguste Escoffier lent his culinary skills and talents to open the Carlton and Ritz hotels, and on the German Passenger Liner (Imperator) , 1913, went on to impress passengers such as Kaiser William II of Germany who was the last German Emperor and King of Prussia. The Peach Melba is a classic dessert, invented in 1892 or 1893 by chef Auguste Escoffier, and Escoffier created this famous treat for Australian singer Nellie Melba. Escoffier is well known for such famous treats as Peach Melba. Escoffier wrote volumes on the art of cooking, but within the commercial kitchens, Escoffier was largely responsible as the mover and shaker in the improvement of the working conditions. Escoffier was a stickler for cleanliness, and Escoffier demanded the same cleanliness from the working staff. Escoffier was also against any type of swearing or violence from his workers and all these types of behaviour was forbidden, and at the time swearing or violence was common in the kitchens among apprentices and older cooking staff.

The grandson of a chef, and a restrauteur’s son, Charles Ranhofer will go down in history as one of great chefs, and the very first French chef to bring the style and grandeur of France’s cuisine to North America. Charles Ranhofer was the head chef, and ran its kitchens at the famous Delmonico’s Restaurant in New York for over 30 years. Charles Ranhofer culinary creatations such as Baked Alaska and Lobster Newburg, plus many others were introduced and served to a host of foreign dignitaries, President Andrew Johnson, President U.S. Grant and Charles Dickens, among others.

One of the most famous and gifted chefs of all time is not French, her name is Julia Child and she is an American, author, and television personality, who introduced French cuisine and cooking techniques to the American mainstream, through her television programs and many cookbooks. Mastering the Art of French Cooking is one of the more famous cookbooks that Julia Child wrote in 1961, and with the series The French Chef, showcasing her sui generis television persona, which started in 1963.

Born in California, and at the age of 34 Julia Child started her cooking career, and a move to France where she had her grand epiphany, a sudden realization that good food is more than mashed potatoes and roast beef. Julia Child enrolled and got a culinary arts education at the esteemed Cordon Bleu cooking school in Paris. Later, with two partners, Julia Child wrote the cookbook “Mastering the Art of French Cooking”, and became the very first “celebrity chef” with more cookbooks, television programs, newspaper columns, and magazine articles. She received the French Legion of Honor in 2000 and the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2003. Julia Child also received honorary doctorates from Harvard University, her alma mater Smith College, and several other universities. Julia Child brought to North America exquisite French cuisine as much with her “have-a-good-time” attitude toward the art of cooking as she did with her cooking skill, talent and expertise.

To all of these great chefs who have turned cooking into a real art form, and for their incredible talents, giftedness and tireless contributions to cooking, everybody owes a Hugh debt. James Murray is a successful writer and online Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM) expert providing valuable tips and advice for those interested in seo and sem strategies. His numerous articles found on the Internet, provide useful and factual seo and sem information and insight. Some of his websites are : http://www.seo-worldwide.net , http://www.atclickbank.com , http://www.website-submissions-worldwide.com

Culinary Schools Acknowledge World And Regional Cuisines

Traditional culinary schools have evolved considerably since the 1950’s and 60’s. At that time, gourmet cooking was still based primarily on centuries of tradition firmly rooted in the European cooking tradition. Although there were culinary schools in the United States at that time, they were few and far between because many still felt that the world’s great chefs hailed primarily from Europe and France in particular. Times have changed considerably and the world of gourmet cooking has benefited greatly from the shift.

If you still remember Julia Child’s television series that introduced good cooking to the general public, you may also remember the cooking style she demonstrated which was traditional, satisfying and heavy foods. There were rich sauces and traditional French cuisine that was wonderful, however there was little variety in terms of regional dishes. French, Italian and Spanish dishes were often demonstrated, but Asian and American ethnic cuisines weren’t taught.

It isn’t surprising, like most chefs at that time, Julia Child was traditionally trained in the French tradition. The relatively small number of culinary schools in the United States at mid-century were all based on a traditional French pattern. Over the years, however, the demand for creative dishes and ethnic cuisines grew and culinary institutes began to respond. The finest schools continue to cover the basic and advanced techniques of European cooking, but now also give students in-depth understanding of regional cooking techniques, seasonings and styles.

In the last three decades, ethnic and regional food specialties have gained huge popularity. Where these foods were once found primarily in ethnic neighborhoods, they have now gone mainstream and been elevated to fine cuisine due to their increased popularity and the interest of great chefs around the globe. Culinary schools now teach students everything from unusual cooking methods to sausage making and everything in between.

In an increasingly small world where so many people travel to different cultures and try new foods, it isn’t surprising that the interest in regional and world cuisine has taken off. When travelers return home, they hope to find the delicious foods they’ve learned to love at home as well, and chefs are responding to this trend.

Today’s culinary schools cover a wide variety of food traditions, including French, Spanish, Italian, Asian, Polynesian, Creole and Cajun, as well as many sub-categories of each of these international cuisines. “Fusion” foods are also increasingly popular. Fusion is the combination of two distinct types of cuisine in order to create unique new dishes. Fusion restaurants are now some of the most popular in the country because of their skillful blending of many international traditions that produce flavorful new dishes to tempt diners.

If you enjoy experimenting in the kitchen and trying new ways to prepare traditional foods, culinary school may be the perfect career choice for you. Be sure to ask each school you are considering what kinds of cuisines will be taught. The best culinary schools have evolved and continue to do so in order to tempt the public’s increasingly discriminating and worldly palate.

Tips For Decorating A Bridal Shower Party

Decorating a bridal shower can be simple and fun. Here are some tips to follow:

1. Follow a theme
If youre concerned with your party seeming put together and having continuity from start to finish, it is a good idea to have a bridal shower theme. Themes can be as simple as choosing a few colors you like and threading them throughout the party, or as elaborate as showcasing a specific designer. Most themes are fun and full of potential.

Some popular themes follow:
*Honeymoon: decorate with posters, photos, and items showcasing the location of the bridal couples honeymoon
*Lingerie: host an adult pajama party and invite a salesperson to do a lingerie demonstration for your bridal shower. Decorate in boudoir silks and reds or in a fifties pajama party theme
*Stock the Pantry: each guest is instructed to bring a gift that can be used to stock the pantry or kitchen of the new couple. Decorate with potted herbs, herbal prints, and flowers.
*Kiss the Cook: for a woman with culinary leanings, have a chef do a demonstration at the bridal shower. For a specific niche of cooking, decorate with the country of origin in mind (eg. France, Italy). For a general cooking theme, decorate with kitchen utensils and retro food prints.

2. Use food as decoration
Potted and fresh herbs make good decorations. Appetizers and desserts can be arranged in tiers. Petit-fours and tea sandwiches or cookies make especially pretty tiered sculptures. Certain foods, like cheese fondue or chocolate fountains, are decorative enough to become centerpieces on their own. Using the food to fill out the decorations keeps both costs and cleanup down and makes a unique look.

3. Create tablescapes
Decorating at a party where food will be served need not be as simple as throwing a tablecloth over a table, setting out place settings, and serving lunch. Take time to contrast and combine colors, textures, and patterns to build a layered, finished look. Use a bold tablecloth in one of the theme colors. Layer with placemats of two more contrasting colors. Integrate antique, thrift-store, or found place settings, vases, and silverware for a unique look. For an example of what this looks like, watch Semi-Homemade Cooking with Sandra Lee on The Food Network. She creates a special tablescape for each show to go along with the dishes she has made.

5. Use the entire room
Dont forget to use lighting, music, and room elements to aid the decoration of the party. Changing the lighting by using table lamps, fairy lights, or candles can create an incredible difference in mood and ambiance. You can also use or depart from the season youre in to add to the decoration of the party. Allow the scene outside of the window to become a decorative touch. Bring the season inside with found nature objects and flowers.

What you need most when decorating for a bridal shower is creativity and an open mind. No matter your budget, you can make a bridal shower look great. Use what you have, play up the best parts, and tie it together with color or a theme.

History Of French Cuisine, The French Revolution And Famous French Culinary Chefs

French cuisine was prepared by ill tempered French chefs, who were very picky about their food, and these French chefs incorporated overly rich sauces to accompany the food, plus the preparation of food dishes had to be perfect. However, todays preference is more about the taste and texture of the food. French chefs of today produce cuisine that is artistically arranged on the plate, and contains a wonderful mix of smells, textures, and flavors. France’s rich cuisine and their constant love affair with food is one of modern France’s greatest treasures.

French cuisine has evolved from many centuries of political change and social events. In the Middle Ages chefs like Guillaume Tirel, alias Taillevent was a cook to the Court of France at the time of the first Valois kings. Guillaume Tirel was head chef or queux to Philip VI and later to the Dauphin de Viennois, who prepared lavish banquets for the upper class with ornate and heavily seasoned food. Le Viandier is a famous cookery book which Guillaume Tirel wrote which was influential on French cuisine and medieval cuisine in northern France.

In the year 1789, “The French Revolution” era, and lasting over 10 years was a period of political and social upheaval in the history of France. French cusine evolved towards fewer spices and increased usage of many types of herbs. These refined techniques in French cooking beginning with Franois Pierre La Varenne, author of “Le cuisinier franois”, the founding text of modern French cuisine, and which established the foundation for what would become one of the basics of French cooking. French cusine developed further with the famous chef and personality of Napoleon Bonaparte, which influenced the culinary future of France, plus other dignitaries, Marie-Antoine Carme.

Antoine Careme well known as the “King of Chefs and the Chef of Kings,” and in Paris, in the 19th century, Careme became the father of “haute cuisine” which is the high art of French cooking. French statesman and Diplomat Talleyrand-Perigord, the future King George IV, Czar Alexander I, and James Rothschild a powerful banker, Careme was the Chef to these world leaders and aristocrats. Careme is well known for his famous writings on the art of cooking, included in the writings is the famed “The Art of French Cooking” or L’Art de la Cuisine Francaise. The masterpiece contains volumes of information and knowledge on the history of French cooking.

French cuisine was codified by George Auguste Escoffier, who in the late 19th and early 20th century modernized Careme’s elaborate style of cuisine by his ingenious simplification of the food, and Escoffier became the modern version of haute cuisine. Haute cuisine meaning “high cooking” in French or grande cuisine. In North America, haute cuisine refers to the cooking of the grand restaurants and hotels, which is characterised by elaborate preparations and presentations. Until the 1970s, this cuisine was defined by the French phrase cuisine classique, and was supplanted by nouvelle cuisine. Today, haute cuisine is not defined by any particular style.

However, George Auguste Escoffiers culinary work was missing a lot of the regional character of foods and cooking that was found in the provinces of France. Gastro Tourism and the Guide Michelin or Le Guide Michelin, which is a series of annual guide books published by Michelin for over a dozen countries, helped bring people of France and the world to the countryside of France during the 20th century and beyond, to experience the taste and smells of this rich bourgeois and peasant cuisine of France.

In the southwestern part of France, Basque cuisine, referring to the typical food dishes and cooking ingredients of the cuisine of the Basque people, and has been a large influence over this type of French cuisine. The food dishes and ingredients various from region to region, but many significant regional dishes have become both regional and national. Today, various dishes that once were regional, however, have proliferated in different variations across France. Wine and cheese are also HUGH parts of the French cuisine, regionally and nationally, playing different roles both with their many variations and the Vins dAppellation dOrigine Contrle, or AOC wines, officially recognized. (regulated appellation)

Around the world centuries later, among connoisseurs of French cuisine, gourmet innovations which have been brought forth by both the French Revolution and the glorious conquests of “Empereur des Francais Napolon I”, have not lost their appeal and popularity, and Napolon Pastries as an example, Napolons are served today.

Answering Your Culinary Schools Questions

There is something relaxing about cooking a favorite meal at home. The delicious aromas while the food is cooking and then there is the final product awaiting your taste buds. Have you ever given any thought to taking your love and passion for food and making it into a career?

Many people are finding rewarding careers in the food industry. Culinary schools are experiencing record enrollment thanks in part to television shows such as ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ and ‘Top Chef’.

Each week participants put their cooking skills to the test and it makes others yearn to be in the kitchen doing the same thing. Even if cooking is not your idea of fun there are other aspects of the food industry that are taught in culinary schools.

You may want to work on the business side. Where ever your passion for food lies, a culinary school can help you find the skills you need. In this article we will cover the basics of culinary schools and what you can expect from this fiery career choice.

What do culinary schools teach?

Culinary schools begin with the basics of the kitchen. One of the first lessons you will learn is about kitchen safety such as handling knives and what to do in an emergency such as a fire. You will learn basic food preparation guidelines such as what temperature is acceptable on meats.

You will learn basic accounting, computer skills, inventory management and even some psychology. Culinary schools want you to have a diverse background because the workplace is so diverse. The most important lesson you learn is how to work together as a team. One person cannot run a restaurant or kitchen alone so teamwork is absolutely essential.

Are culinary schools all about learning how to cook?

You may be surprised to learn that culinary schools do teach more than kitchen skills such as knife handling and how to make a souffle. They also teach students how to deal with the public, how to handle finances and how to manage inventory.

There is also instruction on how to communicate effectively as well as manage employees. Culinary schools want to give you a broad background on the food industry. The more information you have the better prepared you will be when you graduate.

Do certain schools specialize in different areas of the culinary world?

There are schools that do specialize in certain cuisines but you would typically find these specialized schools overseas. The culinary schools in the United States tend to teach a broad spectrum since culinary palates are so diverse here. Should you wish to study French cuisine exclusively it would be best to attend a school in France where you can learn from the masters of the trade.

What are some of the jobs that I can expect to work in after I graduate from a culinary school?

There are a wide variety of jobs that can open up for you once you have graduated from a culinary school. You can be a line chef, an assistant baker, a restaurant manager and even be a pantry cook. Do not expect to get out of school and immediately become a master chef.

It takes years of hard work in order to obtain the level of experience that you need in order to say you are a master chef. You may study for ten years under another chef before you go out on your own. Eventually you will gain the knowledge and skills you need in order to be considered a master chef. The trick is patience and practice.

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