Do you trust your staff? Do they trust you? Could security cameras do more harm than good? Master the secrets to preventing beverage, food and retail theft in your restaurant with this exclusive video from ICE and American Express’ four-part Restaurant Success Series. From the cash drawer “no-sale” to the little-known “straw-trick” and other clever theft secrets, ICE Culinary Management Instructor Anthony Caporale reveals the ins and outs of what might really be happening behind your counter.
Among the video’s most fascinating highlights? Anthony shares insight into employee theft — a common problem that accounts for approximately 75% of a restaurant’s inventory loss, according to the National Restaurant Association. Read on to learn five ways “employee collusion” could be undermining your profits.
By Carly DeFIlippo
When it comes to choosing the most energetic, passionate communities in America, are there any stronger contenders than food lovers and football fans? There is no day when these teams’ talents combine more than on Thanksgiving, which is why we’re wishing you a very happy holiday from ICE and our #GangGreen partners, the NY Jets.
We’ve been gearing up for the ultimate food fest throughout the second season of the Official New York Jets Cooking School at ICE, teaching fans to craft everything from Chicago deep dish pizza to the ultimate chicken wings, and even deep-fried turkeys. What’s more, each class has featured current and former Jets players as special guests, from Bruce Harper and Wesley Walker to Brandon Moore, Tony Richardson, Willie Colon and Michael Vick.
There are still two more chances for you to join in the food and football fun before the end of the season. Continue reading for details!
The day of Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to catch up with extended family and friends, but from a culinary perspective, we’re all about the leftovers. Last year, ICE Director of Culinary Development James Briscione wow’ed us with three brilliant recipes for leftover turkey. So, of course, this year we came back for more. Grab a wedge of brie, a bag of cranberries and those prized turkey scraps. This is one grilled cheese you don’t want to miss.
*Note: This recipe includes instructions to make cranberry chutney from scratch, but if you still have leftover cranberry sauce from your holiday dinner, lucky you!
By Chefs Cara Tannenbaum and Andrea Tutunjian
Chowders are chunky, hearty soups—a classic comfort food for the long, cold winter. As ingredients, cauliflower and cashews are both mellow in flavor, with buttery, earthy richness, but here they combine to make a bold soup. Cauliflower has become a star in the modern nutritional hit parade, standing in for potatoes in a mash or roasted until its curly white edges turn deep gold. The florets soften entirely in this soup but keep their creamy white color. We like to purée about a quarter of the soup and leave the rest of the florets and cashew pieces whole. This gives the soup a rich texture without the addition of too much heavy cream. (We’ve added a little cream to finish the soup, but if you choose to leave it out, the soup will still taste unctuous.)
Yield: 12 cups
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 all-purpose potato, peeled and chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 ½ cups (7 ½ ounces) coarsely chopped cashews
- 4 cups (14 ounces) cauliflower florets (from 1 small head)
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
By Carly DeFilippo
When you’re an executive chef in one of the nation’s hottest food cities, holidays become just another day at work. So, who better to ask for their Thanksgiving tips than the professionals who reinvent holiday flavors year after year?
ICE Culinary Arts alum Anthony Ricco leads the kitchen at Jean Georges’ Spice Market —which means infusing an all-American holiday with Southeast Asian flavors. Whether it’s gingered cranberry sauce, chestnut-sausage stuffing with Chinese dates or sweet potato purée with cardamom marshmallow meringue, Anthony has reinvented every classic dish several times over.
By Michael Laiskonis, ICE Creative Director
Preparations are well underway as ICE staff and students anticipate the move from our 23rd Street facility to Brookfield Place in Lower Manhattan. As construction hums away, the lines set down on paper blueprints are turning into reality, revealing an immersive, state-of-the-art atmosphere for cooking and study. In addition to dedicated rooms for culinary technology, charcuterie, mixology and wine studies, I’m excited to announce that the new facility will contain an artisanal chocolate studio, complete with a full range of “bean to bar” equipment.
The vision for the 550 square ft. studio is to approach chocolate from a holistic perspective. Truly unique in the realm of culinary education, this chocolate studio will provide knowledge and inspiration across a broad spectrum of hands-on applications—for our career students and recreational cooks, as well as for established pastry chefs and professionals seeking to learn the finer points of artisanal chocolate production. An underlying spirit of research and development into the technical science and the mystical art of chocolate will drive the wide array of program offerings.
By Grace Reynolds—Student, School of Culinary Management
It’s been a busy five weeks since my first blog post. In class, we’ve covered topics ranging from menu planning and finding a location to restaurant finances and branding. What’s more, it seems like we’re meeting a new food entrepreneur each time we come to class! Visits from the innovators at Chipotle and Sixpoint Brewery and field trips to Daniel and Blue Smoke have been a few of the highlights. The end result is information and networking overload. While that might sound intimidating, it’s actually the intellectual equivalent of stuffing yourself on Thanksgiving: though you can barely fit another bite, you keep on eating—or in this case, learning—because it’s that good.
While we’ve covered a wide range of subjects, my favorite thus far has been restaurant psychology. I’ve always been fascinated by human psychology—though honestly, who isn’t? Understanding how it transforms the dining experience, however, is particularly eye opening. Think you chose that filet mignon of your own free will? Think again. From interior design to menu item placement, successful restaurants use psychology to influence customers’ perceptions and decisions. Read on to discover four insider strategies for restaurant success.
By Jenny McCoy—Chef Instructor, School of Pastry & Baking Arts
Early on in my career, while working in New Orleans for Emeril Lagasse, I was tasked with creating inventive variations on the ever-popular bread pudding. My menu at Delmonico in New Orleans featured a seasonal bread pudding, which I changed monthly. In the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, this sweet potato bread pudding with cashews proved to be a favorite. Served with a dollop of marshmallow meringue, what was once a classic side dish is easily transformed into dessert.
Sweet Potato Bread Pudding with Crunchy Cashews (from Desserts for Every Season)
Makes 8 to 10 servings
- Non-stick cooking spray
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes
- 1 cup whole milk, divided
- 4 large eggs
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup lightly packed dark brown sugar
- ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons whiskey
- Finely grated zest of ¼ orange
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 6 cups (about 8 ounces) soft white bread, cut into ¾ inch cubes
- ½ cup (about 2 ½ ounces) whole cashews, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
- 1 recipe Marshmallow Meringue (optional)
By Hillery Wheeler, ICE Admissions Department
This month, ICE was thrilled to host an event for the some of the most important career mentors for aspiring chefs and hospitality professionals: school counselors. Nearly thirty educators from across the tri-state area joined our admissions staff for a firsthand look at ICE’s unique brand of culinary training. Over the course of the night, the counselors learned about culinary career opportunities for their soon-to-be-graduates while testing their hand at the art of pasta making with Chef James Briscione, Director of Culinary Development.
To kick off the evening, Chef Richard Simpson, Vice President of Education, provided insight into the various programs the school offers and shared stories of his own experiences in professional kitchens through the years. Maureen Drum Fagin, Director of Career Services, also spoke about the various resources that are available, both to ICE students as they pursue their externships and the ongoing support provided to ICE graduates as they move through their careers in the food and hospitality industries. Finally, Brian Aronowitz, Chief Marketing Officer, shared the exciting details about ICE’s forthcoming move to Brookfield Place, our brand new waterfront facility in Lower Manhattan. The counselors then stepped into the shoes of culinary students, as Chef James led a hands-on class in crafting artisanal pasta dough and shaping the perfect ravioli.
By Carly DeFilippo—Student, School of Culinary Arts
As I round the corner on the last lap of culinary school, it’s amazing to consider how far my classmates and I have come. Less than eight months ago, many of us didn’t know how to tell the difference between oregano and marjoram. Today, we’re tackling the recipes of the greatest chefs of our time.
After working through a seemingly endless array of techniques, our class has arrived at the point in our program where we spend five days crafting menus by five incredible chefs: Mario Batali, Daniel Boulud, Thomas Keller, Rick Bayless and Ming Tsai. Yet, despite the caliber of these culinary leaders, I didn’t initially feel excited about these lessons. Of course, I have immense respect for all these chefs, but, as a student, I have typically found that I learn more by studying a general concept than by following a recipe.
But oh, how I was wrong. Just like any line cook who has worked under a truly great chef, “merely following a recipe” turned out to be quite the lesson in and of itself.