A Warm and Icy month at The Culinary
As the truck rolls up to the campus at the University of South Carolina, you can feel the excitement in the air, well, in between the rain drops. Seventeen blocks of ice are delivered to the Horseshoe as the Culinary students begin to gather with a mix of chainsaw heaven and fear painted across their faces. Chef Jeff Quasha, Banquet Chef from Ruth’s Chris and our instructor for advanced Garde Manager, goes over the safety instructions and ice carving advice. Students from USC begin to stop by to see what is happening which is the perfect end to a class full of sausage stuffing, pate confusion, and more hors d’oeuvres then you can shake a gherkin at.
Rotation 22 now begins their last class of advanced baking and pastry with Chef George Bozko, from the Embassy Suites hotel. One student was heard to say as they were tasting chocolate caramel sauce, sabayon sauce, and pastry cream, “Wow this is really great —I am going to need to run an extra ½ mile a day.” In this world of fantastic frozen pre-made desserts, I believe it is important to maintain at least one in-house dessert selection, or we may lose the art of pastry altogether.
Rotation 23 has just tourne’d their way out of vegetable and starches right and go into the sauté pan of meats and proteins class. For any one that has completed the program in the last seven years, knows what a heartless instructor this class has. From land to sea with a whole lot of food costing, math and more math, every student will need a mental health day after it is over.
Tax day has come and gone, but for me it will always be the day six Culinary students gave their time beginning at 5:45 am (that’s when the sun is in the east) to help the ACF midlands chapter at Harbison West Elementary school. We fed around five hundred kids a nutritional, hot breakfast, and then for the next 3 hours taught them about healthy living habits, sanitation, and nutrition. I can not stress enough the importance of giving back to the community that has given all of us so much, and I heard more than one student say they wanted to be a Chef when they grow up. I personally think it is the power of the paper toque.
John Lindower The Culinary Institute at Carolina Interim Director