By Steve Zagor, Dean of Culinary Business
“Man with Machete Robs Upscale Chelsea Restaurant,” read the headline. Another terrible crime in the big city? Yes, for sure. Thankfully no one was hurt. But reading the story—and realizing that the incident occurred just a few blocks from ICE—made me reflect on certain safety procedures we often ignore restaurant operations.
While restaurant employees are trained to be vigilant about sanitation, food safety and other methods of protecting their guests, unfortunately many restaurant professionals are unprepared for robberies. Such unfortunate events happen all too frequently and the losses can be substantial, whether the criminals are employees, guests or an unknown perpetrator. Are there precautions that can be taken to prevent these incidents?
By Carly DeFilippo, Culinary Arts Student
In the process of preparing a multi-step dish, there are typically a few points of “no return.” Incorrectly butchering a protein, over-cooking the pasta or curdling the egg in your sauce are all-too-common ways to waste time and valuable products. Yet for all these stiff road blocks in the culinary kitchen, there are many more forgiving mistakes—opportunities to add in ingredients or seasoning you had forgotten, methods to smooth out overly reduced sauces or creative solutions for those improperly butchered proteins.
While the raw ingredients are often (though not always) less costly in a pastry kitchen, there is far less room for slip-ups. Errors in measurement, adding ingredients in the improper order or even something as simple as forgetting the salt can result in an unusable product. Which is why I was thrilled to learn that I would be studying this tricky art with none other than Chef Sim Cass, a master of detail and all things baked.
By Carly DeFilippo
In the ever-growing buffet of possible food careers, sometimes it’s hard to choose what will end up on your plate. Will I be a magazine editor or a restaurant owner? A cookbook author or an entrepreneur? Well, in the case of ICE alum Sara Deseran, she’s having her cake and eating it too. At the mere age of 42, she’s the co-owner of five restaurants, the food editor for San Francisco magazine and a cookbook author—and still, she’s plotting to one day write freelance articles for the New York Times. Because why shouldn’t you get to do everything you’ve always wanted to do?
Where was your ICE externship and how has it affected your career?
For my ICE externship, I worked at Saveur magazine in the test kitchen, which was a complete thrill. At the time, there was no magazine I loved more. From there, I became the food editor at 7×7 magazine and a short-lived publication called Williams-Sonoma Taste. Today, I work as the food editor at San Francisco magazine and oversee our “Feast” section.
By Carly DeFilippo
In the course of any career, there are moments that change everything. For young restaurant manager Jeff Yoskowitz, a disagreement with his chef—in specific, one phrase: “You don’t like it? Why don’t you do it yourself?”—was all it took to spark a life in the kitchen.
Though his initial motivation to move from management to the back of the house was to master a wider range of skills (and become a better manager), it soon became clear that Jeff had a future in cooking.
While Jeff started out on the savory side of the kitchen, it was a chance encounter with a bakery on the Upper West Side—Les Friandises—that would lead him to pastry. The chef, Jean-Claude Sanchez, was the original pastry chef at famed French restaurant, Le Bernadin, where he helped restaurateurs Maguy and Gilbert Le Coze earn their first four-star review from the New York Times. Though he was already employed in another kitchen, Jeff asked if there was a position open. It was a decision that would forever change his career.
After a sold-out 2013 season, ICE and the NY Jets are proud to announce Season 2 of our exclusive gameday cooking classes. Step up your tailgating skills with lessons from ICE’s team of all-pro chefs—without missing a minute of Monday or Thursday Night Football. What’s more, fans will have the chance to meet and cook alongside current and former Jets players.
The team is ready to #JetUp for a roaring start! New York Jets Offensive Lineman Willie Colon can’t wait to get in on the action this year. Says Willie, “I’m very excited to team up with ICE for a second season of the Jets Cooking School. This year’s classes will be bigger and better and help Jets fans take their tailgates to the next level. I look forward to working with ICE’s outstanding chefs and the amazing fans that participate to help make these delicious recipes. ”
New to this season, all class attendees will receive the ICE Exclusive VIP Jets Experience, including a once in a lifetime opportunity: an exclusive, behind-the-scenes tour of MetLife Stadium—game day home to the New York Jets. The tour includes a visit to the stadium’s premium spaces, including the field, press box, Jets team locker room and more.
By Casey Feehan
A lot can happen in the time between pitching and publishing a cookbook—especially when that process takes seven years. Aside from the endless edits, re-writes, negotiations and time in the kitchen, life happens: trends are fickle, science can change facts, and various moving parts may drift away. It’s enough to make anyone go nuts.
Nuts are exactly what Assistant Dean of Students, Cara Tannenbaum, and Director of Education, Andrea Tutunjian, have had on the brain for the past seven years, all leading up to the recent release of their first book, In a Nutshell: Cooking and Baking with Nuts and Seeds (W. W. Norton & Co.), which they celebrated last Thursday evening at ICE. Yet for Andrea and Cara, those seven years never rattled their working relationship and friendship, which sparked two decades ago in the kitchen.
By Michael Laiskonis, ICE Creative Director
Seldom does a week go by without my receiving a dozen or more of emails, phone calls or text messages, all looking for answers.
“Do you have a recipe for…?”
“Have you ever tried…?”
“What would happen if…?”
Far from being a burden, I happily participate in these personal exchanges because I believe there should be no secrets in cooking. The thing I value most about being a chef is the community that comes with it; there’s an atmosphere of friendly competition that encourages sharing.
As chefs, we can easily get in over our heads. It’s a scary feeling, but the process of finding a solution is also quite rewarding. I’m certainly not above asking others for advice on problems that I’m working out. Having been asked for help myself, I’ve realized that assisting others is sometimes the best way to learn new things—especially in an age when so many of our questions involve harnessing (or occasionally attempting to defy) the laws of physics and chemistry.
When it comes to healthy, delicious cooking, there are few ingredients more tasty or versatile than nuts and seeds. That’s why it’s no surprise that the latest cookbook from the ICE family, In a Nutshell, is making big waves in the food community. Written by ICE Director of Education Andrea Tutunjian and Assistant Dean of Students Cara Tannenbaum, the book is an all-in-one-guide to mastering an incredible range of techniques. From sunflower seeds to pepitas, peanuts to macadamias, it’s a literal rainbow of protein-packed dips, roasts, desserts and more.
In celebration of the book’s release, Oprah.com’s #OwnShow checked in with the chefs to learn five unusual ways to use everyone’s favorite snack nut: the almond. Enjoy Cara and Andrea’s tips in the videos below, and click the name of each dish for the full recipe!
As the Executive Chef and Owner of Cull & Pistol in Chelsea Market, ICE Culinary Management alum David Seigal is literally at the center of New York City’s food scene. His refined take on seafood-centric dining has received raves in the Wall Street Journal, Zagat, Tasting Table and other publications. Today, David credits his success with 12 years of “blood, sweat and tears” cooking on the line, as well as his entrepreneurial business training at ICE.
How did ICE help you find your culinary voice?
The Culinary Management program at ICE was instrumental in helping me think analytically from a business standpoint, beyond a culinary “what tastes good and how do I get it on the plate” perspective. As I mentioned before, it’s crucial for chefs to understand the business side of cooking, and ICE helped me to start paying more attention to the interplay between food, service and décor, as well as the guest experience. I’ve opened six restaurants since 2003 and the curriculum at ICE helped develop my hospitality philosophy for each of these businesses.