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Tips to Conduct Culinary Classes for Kids

Kids from the current generation are sure a smart lot. This was evident when I went to visit a friend’s place, and was given a sumptuous piece of pie to sink my teeth into. And lo and behold! The pie was not baked by my friend―it was her cute teenage daughter. “Excellent!” is all what I had to say, and I could barely control my excitement over her culinary skills. The secret to this was, of course, the summer classes she had joined to hone her cooking skills.

Cooking with kids can be a fun affair. Today’s children are not really the ‘clumsy kinds’ around the kitchen. They can juggle a whole lot of activities and yet excel in everything they undertake. The savvy kids of today join dance classes, karate classes, excel in swimming, and even paint. Parents ensure their children dabble with a little bit of everything so that they can handle any situations in the future. The children of today are, thus, a smart lot that know exactly what they want and what they love to do.

Although cooking is considered to be an activity for adults, many children begin at an early age. Cooking with kids can be a whole lot of fun in the kitchen. (Although, cleaning up the mess may not be everybody’s idea of fun.) There are many culinary classes that are planned particularly during summer vacations. This is the period when kids have plenty of time on hand, and would also have the inclination to learn something new. However, there are a few things one would have to bear in mind while conducting one.

Basic tips to Conduct Culinary Classes

Safety is always of prime importance. Children being children, are bound to be impish, and this is something adults may not always have control over. You must keep kids away from sharp objects or hot stoves. In case the recipe involves the use of sharp objects, you can only demonstrate the same and place them away safely once used. If possible, it is better to use plastic knives or butter knives for the cutting process. They need to know how to hold the knife to avoid hurting their fingers. Include plastic cups and bowls, and avoid the use of glassware.

Kids should be taught to practice safety measures in many other issues related to the kitchen. Teach kids to keep away from a hot oven and make sure they know how to handle pots. They need to be taught how to use the pot handles without spilling things over. This is particularly necessary when these pots contain ingredients that are boiling hot. Older kids can be shown details about the operation of electrical gadgets used for cooking. Apart from this, remind them to keep an eye on the electrical gadgets and cords. These safety measures are one of the most important steps that must be included in the sessions. Kids should be aware of possible hazards. For example, teach them to avoid using electrical appliances near the sink or a source of water.

The recipes used for culinary classes should be just basic initially. Smoothies, salads, cheese and egg recipes, sandwiches, etc., are a great way to begin their cooking sessions. Teach them the basics of frying, baking, roasting, boiling, etc. This forms the base of all types of recipes. You also need to show some important steps like washing the veggies, mixing batters, spreading butter, kneading dough, serving food, beating eggs, and pouring liquids.

Do not yell in case there is a mess. Think about the first time you began cooking and probably your anger will melt away! Well, you need to make kids feel at ease. Spills are a part of culinary classes, so keep mops within reach.

Arrange for some basic supplies for kids. These should include a chef’s hat, aprons, comfortable shoes, and even crockery meant for children. This will only make things motivating for children and develop their interest. Make your cooking class as interesting as possible. Use illustrations, food games, or even videos of different recipes for children. These elements will help break the monotony. Hygiene is of utmost importance. Teach kids to wash their hands whenever required. This is of the most important points that should be covered.

The importance of such classes has increased with time, especially with parents busy pursuing their professional interests. Children can thus learn to be self-reliant and cook homemade food instead of opting for unhealthy ready-to-eat foodstuff.

Top Culinary Schools in America

In the US, as per the National Restaurant Association (NRA), restaurants and hotels are one of the biggest private sector employers. With the hospitality sector at its most developed stage, careers in culinary have grown to become extremely popular. A culinary career is not only rewarding when it comes to job satisfaction, it is also decent when it comes to salaries.

Best Culinary Schools in America

Whether you want to be a chef or you wish to be skilled in bartending, these schools have programs for all of you. The schools mentioned below are some of the best in the US. The list is random and has not been put in any specific order.

International Culinary Schools at the Arts Institutes
It is considered to be the biggest culinary institution in the US, offering culinary degrees to more than 20 associate schools. Founded in 1975, this 30-year old institution is known to provide excellent placements and an experienced faculty. It is one of the top culinary schools where you not only learn cooking, but also numerous aspects of restaurant management.

Institute of Culinary Education, NYC
The Institute of Culinary Education, founded in 1975, is known for providing excellent culinary education. To get admission into its various programs of culinary, students must complete two years college education or must have at least 2 years of work experience. Students from all across the US come to study in this top rate college.

California Culinary Academy (San Francisco)
One of the finest culinary colleges in San Francisco, US, the California Culinary Academy is known for its various programs, like culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, and hospitality and restaurant management. It is undoubtedly one of the finest culinary schools in America.

Texas Culinary Academy
It has been fifteen years since the establishment of the Texas Culinary Academy, and it has evolved to become one of the best culinary institutes in the US. Located in a sprawling campus of 73,000 square feet, this institute teaches you everything about cooking.

French Culinary Institute, NYC
The ultimate French technique when mixed with American dynamism leads to an epicurean’s delight. Located in NYC, the French Culinary Institute has been known to be a modern culinary school producing some of the best chefs all across the world. It also boasts of its faculty, which include some of the most famous chefs from across the world.

Some Other Schools to Consider
Here are some other institutes that are worth of a mention as some of the most popular culinary schools in the US.

– Scottsdale Culinary Institute
– Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, Los Angeles
– L’Academie de Cuisine, Washington, DC
– Johnson & Wales University
– New England Culinary Institute
– Sullivan University (At the National Center for Hospitality Studies) – Louisville, Kentucky
– Western Culinary Institute (Cordon Bleu)
– Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts at Minneapolis/St. Paul
– Pennsylvania Culinary Institute
– The School of Culinary Arts – Kendall College-Chicago-Illinois
– Culinary Institute, Hyde Park NY

Famous Online Schools

Thanks to online education programs, you can learn the nuances of culinary arts by getting an online degree. You can learn various aspects of culinary education by taking diplomas, certifications, and degrees from the following popular online universities. The online programs of these colleges are recognized all across the US, and are considered a reputed certification. You can visit the websites of each of these colleges and know more about their application procedures and programs offered.

– DeVry University
– University of Phoenix
– Virginia College
– Strayer University
– Ashford University
– Kaplan University
– Penn Foster Career School
– Penn Foster Schools
– Ashworth College
– Fortis College
– Glion Institute of Higher Education
– Meritus University Online
– Remington College

If you’re interested in this field, then make sustained efforts to enter any of these colleges for a bright career. The earning potential of a chef is very decent and so you don’t have to worry much about monetary benefits.

Culinary Chef Job Description

A chef is one who is a cook by profession. However, chefs working with the hospitality sector today, have much more to do than mere cooking. To be more precise, the duty of a chef is to manage the entire kitchen and everything to do with cooking. A chef has to see to it that food is cooked in a way that meets the standards of cleanliness and hygiene. So, the modern chef should have more than just an interest in cooking. He should have a formal training in culinary skills behind him, to be successful as a chef. In addition to educational qualifications, the chef should be healthy and hygienic.

Culinary Chef Requirements

To become a chef, you need to be at least a high school graduate with some experience of practical training. There are many colleges that offer a degree or diploma in cooking. After obtaining a degree (or diploma), you can get some hands-on experience by working as a trainee in restaurant kitchens. Here you can get to see the master chefs at work, and can learn a lot in the process. Since a chef is responsible for deciding the price and measure of the delicacies served to the customers, your ability to do some quick calculations will be an added advantage.

Culinary Chef Job Information

The job opportunities for a culinary chef are mostly in places like hotels, cafeterias and restaurants, where people come to have food. The duty of a chef can vary widely depending on the demands of the place where he is working. Small restaurants and fast food chains have cooks who are adept at making food items such as burgers, pizza, sandwiches, hot-dogs, etc. Such cooks are called short-order cooks, because they specialize in food that gets ready in a jiffy and can be served quickly.

In restaurants that cater to a variety of cuisines from different parts of the world, there are many cooks, each with an expertise in a particular style of cooking. So, there you’ll find separate cooks for Chinese, Continental, Thai, Italian, and Japanese food. Also, cooks are specialized in different departments, such as pastry, soups, desserts, roasting and grilling, among others. In large kitchens such as these, it becomes necessary to have someone to manage things on a day-to-day basis, and this is where the role of a chef comes into picture. The duty of a chef is to oversee the working in the kitchen and supervise the work of cooks and kitchen helpers.

The duties that a culinary chef has to do, varies according to his designation in the food service industry. After obtaining a degree in culinary arts, you can join a restaurant as a station chef or Chef de Partie. Station chefs or line cooks, as they are otherwise known as, prepare food in the kitchen. During this period as a station chef, one has the opportunity to see the second chefs and the executive chef at work. The second chef, or Sous Chef as he is known in French, is the person in charge of supervising the line cooks. The responsibility of ensuring that food is ready on time, and every order is looked into and worked upon, lies with him. In other words, the second chef is the one whose job is to see that all the staff in the kitchen, including the cleaners and helpers, are doing their job efficiently. The next in rank is the executive chef, who is responsible for the working of the entire kitchen. The highest rank in the food service industry is that of an executive chef.

It is the executive chef who is responsible for ensuring that the food served to the customers, looks palatable and at the same time, tastes delicious. Once it’s decided what’s going to be on the menu card, the job of an executive chef is to decide the measure of a particular dish to be served per plate and to set a price for the dish accordingly. The entire responsibility of running the food joint or restaurant efficiently, lies with the executive chef. This includes maintaining a stock of necessary materials needed for preparing food, ensuring that the utensils used for cooking are clean, and electrical equipment such as microwave ovens, blenders, mixers, hot plates, etc. are functioning properly.

Sometimes, the executive chefs use their specialized training in culinary skills, to come up with new recipes that eventually find a permanent place on the restaurant’s menu. If loved by many, such a dish can even go on to become the exclusive attraction of the food joint! Do you remember admiring the diverse menu of a restaurant you visited recently? Well, then it is the executive culinary chef who is to be thanked for it! How popular a restaurant is, largely depends on how good its cooks and chefs are. This is because the tastier and more presentable the food is, the more it will be appreciated by the customers. And more number of happy customers means the popularity of the restaurant will spread by word-of-mouth.

With the recent boom in the hospitality sector, employment opportunities for culinary chefs are many. Even though the salary may depend on several factors such as the location and the establishment where one is employed, the average annual salary of an executive chef ranges from $30,000 to $50,000.

This was all about a culinary chef and his duties. Hope this article inspires you to turn your passion for cooking into a rewarding profession. Wish you luck!

Interesting Facts About Culinary Arts

The term culinary is derived from the word “Culina”. It means cooking or cooking area. A person who is an expert in the culinary arts is known as a “culinarian”. Culinarians are in great demand in the hotel industry. Today, these people are paid heftily for their service rendered. This is one of the fields of study that is currently in vogue among many young people. There are many catering schools teaching this course and the competition is very high, as more and more youngsters are becoming interested in this art of cooking. This is a skill that could be learned if you are interested in cooking. There are many people who are good cooks, but may not have the skills to present their dishes. Presentation of your food is also a part of this course. The culinarians are not only good cooks, but they also know how to decorate their dishes beautifully. This article presents to you some interesting facts about culinary arts.

Historical Facts

– In 1879, the first cooking school was opened in Boston known as “Boston Cooking School”. This school conducted lessons on the “art of American cooking”. This school also prepared the students to hand over their knowledge and skills to others.
– In 1896, Fannie Merritt Farmer’s book on American recipes and culinary art was published. This was the first cookbook to be written and published. Farmer was a former student of Boston Cooking School. This book is still used as a reference book.
– James Beard is known as the father of the American Cuisine. In 1946, his cooking classes on the art of American cooking were telecasted.
– In 1960, Julia Child introduced French cuisine to the American society. Radio stations aired her programs.
Culinary Institute of America (CIA) was established in the late 1960s in the campus of Yale University, Connecticut. – – In 1972, CIA shifted its location to New York. This was the first culinary school to conduct career-oriented courses on culinary arts.

Career Facts

– One of the most common careers is working in food service in restaurants. You could work as either a chef or as restaurant manager. However, choose a good and stable restaurant to begin with.
– Another career option is conducting classes in some reputed institutions. There is a good demand for lecturers. You should have a flair for teaching.
– There is a great demand for culinarians in many star hotels and resorts. There are several areas of focus in this field. If you are good in baking and cake decorations, you can choose to work as a bakeshop attendant.

There are many positions ranging from chef to managers in this field. However, you can be a success only through proper training and practice.