By Chef Michael Laiskonis, ICE Creative Director

‘Cuisine or Death.’ For many years that was my code in the kitchen: a half-serious way to motivate cooks in the face of minor adversity or toward the unobtainable ideal of perfection. A fellow chef once told me he had adopted a similar (if slightly more introspective) military mantra: adaptimproviseovercome. In thinking about the meaning of craftsmanship, I slowly realized how each of those words symbolizes distinct stages in development, marking key points in a cook’s training. One can’t progress to the next level without successfully mastering the last.

ICE - Pro Perspective - Michael Laiskonis

Knowledge, in any craft, is cumulative in nature and exponential in its possible effects. Only through rote mastery of fundamentals, followed by repetitive practice, can a craftsman (whether cook, musician, or architect) approach anything resembling inspired creativity—or, in other words, art. Creativity doesn’t exist in a vacuum, but rather in relation to one’s overall experience and skill set. In this way, good food is the result of many tiny accomplishments, some we can see immediately, and others that take years to germinate.

Adapting to an Unpredictable World

Despite the wisdom and efforts of countless recipe writers, there is no true cooking-by-the-numbers. In the theater of the kitchen, recipes are scripts that serve merely as a guideline, subject to a perpetual series of re-writes. A chef is thus a problem solver, working in a laboratory governed by the variability of nature and its produce, yet also by the strict parameters of chemistry and physics. This duality—unpredictable ingredients and unchanging rules of science—leads to a very practical, pragmatic view of the world that relies on keen observation. “It is what it is,” but there’s still a full dining room to be served, so as chefs we “make the best of it,” using our skills to adapt to the situation at hand.

ICE - Pro Perspective - Michael Laiskonis

The first lessons of an apprentice typically focus on identifying quality: that is a good carrot, this is how one holds a knife, this is what the sauce should taste like. Such crucial observations are the central focus of a cook’s initial years in the kitchen. Until such “rules” have been ingrained into a cook’s common sense, he (or she) is rarely given much opportunity to think for himself.

These basics are further reinforced by repetitive acts; outliers become easier to identify as you increase your familiarity with the task. The best students turn these tedious chores into a means of better understanding the product or the method. The fish butcher will inevitably start to ponder the anatomy of the fish and later, the effectiveness of his technique and ways in which he can do the job faster, better. The pastry cook will learn (through endless trial and error and constant tasting) just the right color of her caramel sauce and by extension, the proper pan and the right level of heat. Eventually, she’ll advance to investigating the chemical properties of sugar as a whole and how best to harness them.

ICE - Pro Perspective - Michael Laiskonis - Fish Fabrication

Early training, then, is quite narrow in focus; its scope limited to the detail rather than the big picture. It’s with these basic skills of identification and repetition of technique that we learn how to adapt and, eventually, to improvise. Even more importantly, this concentration and repetition teaches the cook discipline.

Vigilance and attention to detail are the only barriers separating success from failure. By doing one thing over and over, one becomes acutely aware of the exponential impact one small mistake can have on the forthcoming steps of a lengthy process. Adaptation, therefore, is the reward for good judgment skills. Understanding what quality is and how to achieve it allows the chef to make the proper adjustments in regards to a particular ingredient or technique.

Improvising to Innovate

If the first stage of a cook’s journey solidifies the foundation of one’s craft, the second stage begins to allow for an intellectual connection between the head and the hands. A strong grasp of fundamentals allows the cook to be less fearful of experimentation. Better yet, it arms him with the mystic ability to imagine a dish that is greater than the sum of its parts. Once we have gained confidence in our ability to adapt, improvisation teaches us how to be intuitive, how to predict an outcome before we taste it.

While cooking, as a practice, tends to preserve traditional, established methods and flavor combinations, chefs have a built-in curiosity for the new. We are lifelong students, constantly searching for new ingredients and new technology, not only to invent things that are completely new, but also to make the ‘old’ dishes better or their preparation more efficient. Rather than leave well enough alone, innovative chefs see opportunity in taking something that isn’t broken and breaking it just to see what happens. This impulse to innovate is what moves the craft ever forward.

ICE - Pro Perspective - Michael Laiskonis

Modern professional cooking is not unlike the medieval guild system, whose structure was built upon the hierarchy of apprentice, journeyman, and master. Cooks in their second tier of development are indeed contemporary journeymen, working short stints under various chefs, investigating different styles of cuisine. With some fundamental experience behind them, they move from kitchen to kitchen to absorb the broadest range of skills possible, searching for their own culinary voice. Short-term, unpaid commitments, or stages, are a common way for chefs to quickly gain experience in a wide range of cuisines. As a result—unlike most professions—a lengthy and colorful resume is an aspiring chef’s golden ticket.

Like artists in training, these improvising cooks often express their budding talents by copying the masters. The exercise, in part, honors their culinary idols, but also helps a cook to get inside the master’s head, to peel back the individual layers of flavor and texture. This stage of development—absorbing and analyzing the work of others—marks the point at which a cook begins to truly think like a chef.

Overcoming the Obstacle of an Empty Plate

“The discovery of a new dish does more for human happiness than the discovery of a new star.” - Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste

Once you have a raw material in hand, enough technical skill to manipulate it, and the wisdom to know when it’s best left alone, a chef’s creativity finally enters the picture. But ‘creativity’ isn’t really the right term to apply to this process. I prefer to see it as an individual’s attempt at overcoming the known.

ICE - Pro Perspective - Michael Laiskonis - Apricot Bonbons - Facebook

In the world of cooking, there is little that is truly new. At its best, a dish is simply the expression of a personal challenge, filtered through the whole of a cook’s experience and knowledge. When confronted with an empty plate, we use our intuition to mentally arrange flavors and techniques. The initial obstacle is simply to prepare something delicious; the deeper challenge is to create a dish that refines, improves, and pushes our own boundaries as chefs. What we choose to put (or not to put) on that plate—a composition of flavors, textures, and temperatures—represents the ongoing evolution of not only the chef as an individual, but also the ever-widening spectrum of culinary possibilities.

ICE - Pro Perspective - Michael Laiskonis - Facebook Image

Photo by Michelle Flisek, of COOK in Philadelphia

 

By Carly DeFilippo

Wall Street consultant. Macaron master. International pastry competitor. Best-selling author.

Like many culinary professionals, ICE Chef Instructor Kathryn Gordon never intended to work in food. Yet today, this former management consultant is one of ICE’s most celebrated pastry instructors, and one of the country’s foremost experts on the finicky art of French macarons.

Kathryn Gordon Headshot cropped

ICE Chef-Instructor Kathryn Gordon

Growing up, Kathryn didn’t have a “home base.”  Her father’s work in the oil business meant that the family was constantly on the move, offering her exposure to various regional cuisines, such as the Creole recipes of New Orleans.  She even spent part of her childhood in Australia and attended high school in London, where she sampled a wide range of ethnic foods.

Before she realized her culinary ambitions, Kathryn completed her undergraduate studies at Vassar College, and later, obtained her MBA at New York University’s Stern School of Business. Her work as a consultant in the high-stakes world of Wall Street trading left her more than prepared for a new career in the fast-paced world of restaurant kitchens. So, after earning an honors certification from L’Academie de Cuisine in Washington DC, it’s no surprise that Kathryn excelled in the kitchens of New York’s “big three” restaurants — The Rainbow Room, Tavern on the Green and Windows on the World — then, the three highest-grossing restaurants in the country.

Among her many contacts in the industry, Kathryn names Kurt Walrath as her most influential mentor. From serving dinner for 700 at the Rainbow Room to Sunday brunch for 2,000 at Tavern on the Green, there were few tasks he challenged her to take on that she did not master. Yet it was at Windows on the World, as Pastry Chef of Cellar in the Sky, that Kathryn realized her primary job responsibility was teaching — instructing a sizable staff of experienced chefs and interns during her time there.

Chef-Instructor Kathryn Gordon - ice.edu

Chef Kathryn teaching techniques to a class of recreational students.

Shifting her focus, Kathryn was hired as an instructor (and subsequently became the Program Director for the pastry program) at New York Restaurant School, one of the city’s top culinary schools (now closed). During that time, she also collaborated with an American artist who owned a hotel in France to launch a series of culinary tours and French pastry classes for U.S. based industry professionals.

In 2003, Kathryn joined the faculty at the Institute of Culinary Education and has since helped to launch ICE’s own culinary study abroad programs. She has also proved a formidable competitor in National and Regional pastry competitions, and has even been the Master of Ceremonies for a number of pastry events, including the live Carymax World and National Pastry Championships.

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Chef Gordon instructs the class on the art of making the famously finicky French macarons.

Back in ICE’s New York teaching kitchens, Chef Kathryn aims to create extreme scenarios that challenge students to think on their feet. In 2011, she also published a best-selling guide to crafting French macarons — one of the pastry world’s most notoriously tricky sweets. Described by the Wall Street Journal as the most “comprehensive and inspiring” book on macarons in any language, she is now at work on a companion book for Running Press Publishers.

Chef-Instructor Kathryn Gordon - ice.edu

Chef Kathryn checks on macarons baking in the oven.

Inspired by her attention to detail and determined focus, it’s no surprise that Kathryn’s students have gone on to find their own significant success. Two, in particular — Dana Loia of Dana’ Bakery and Kathleen Hernandez of Cocoamains— have followed in her footsteps, opening entrepreneurial macaron businesses catering to NYC’s latest dessert craze.

Click here to learn more about Chef Kathryn, her macaron classes and work with the ICE Center for Advanced Pastry Studies.

By Michael Laiskonis, ICE Creative Director

I fell into cooking quite by accident. It was the 1990′s and I was pursuing studies in an unrelated field. To supplement my meager student income, I took a job in a small bakery. I had no desire to bake, but I needed money and this was my best option. Yet what began as something I could do quickly morphed into something I felt compelled to do. I caught the bug and there was no turning back; the whole world of gastronomy opened up before me and I was eager to proceed, soaking up as much knowledge as I could get my hands on.

Guest Chef Dinner, Tribute 1999

A picture taken in 1999 at Tribute restaurant during a Guest Chef Dinner (I am on the top far left).

As my career in pastry began to bloom twenty years ago, so too did the food culture that is alive and well today. In that pre-digital age, information was still analog—books, magazines, television—far from the instant access to knowledge we have today. Chefs waited patiently for monthly food magazines and books, held prisoner by a publishing cycle of a year or more. Through these publications, chefs shared their ideas and cemented trends. The same process occurs today, but thanks to the internet, trends now can take hold over night.

In a sense, I’m jealous of young cooks who have the world at their fingertips, who can tap into the work of creative chefs all over the globe in real time. But while I am inspired by today’s emerging chefs and the speed at which they spread their ideas, I often worry that the work of the chefs who preceded the information age—barely a generation removed—may become lost in the chatter of the new.

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Susan and Barry Wine in the kitchen of Quilted Giraffe in the 1980′s. Photo courtesy of TownandCountryMag.com.

The creativity of today’s chefs does not exist in a vacuum. Each generation of chefs stands upon the shoulders of those who came before. If one were to ask the influential chef, Ferran Adria (of the legendary, envelope-pushing El Bulli in Spain), where he derived his inspiration from, he would point us to the French chefs of the 70s and 80s—a movement often referred to as Nouvelle Cuisine or “new cooking.” Looking at this era of food—revolutionary for its time—we discover the cyclical nature of trends and ideas. Culinary fundamentals practiced by today’s chefs (emphasis on seasonality, sense of place, artful presentation and personal expression) are products of this nouvelle cuisine movement started by chefs four decades ago.

One of my book recommendations for budding chefs, courtesy of gourmetfood.about.com

One of my book recommendations for budding chefs. Photo courtesy of gourmetfood.about.com.

Though some of the founding fathers of the nouvelle cuisine movement, such as Paul Bocuse, remain household names, many of these chefs (Alain Chapel, Fredy Girardet, Jacques Maximin, Gaston Lenotre, not to mention a few who directly influenced chefs here in the US, like Gilbert LeCoze and Jean-Louis Palladin) are unknown to young cooks. For example, the vibrant dining scene of present-day New York City is, in large part, due to the chefs who helped build it over the past few decades: Andre Soltner and Alain Sailhac, as well as American-born chefs like Barry Wine (culinary mastermind behind the city’s storied Quilted Giraffe, which opened in 1979) and Nancy Silverton (pastry chef at Jonathan Waxman’s trendsetting Jam’s restaurant in the mid-80s).

'Salade Gourmande' at L2O Restaurant, modeled after Geurard. Photo courtesy of

‘Salade Gourmande’ at L2O Restaurant, modeled after Geurard. Photo courtesy of L2Orestaurant.com

It’s no surprise that many of today’s best chefs are those who recognize the importance of looking back in order to move forward. One such chef is Matthew Kirkley of L2O in Chicago. While the L2O’s tasting menu highlight’s Chef Kirkley’s own creativity, the smaller prix fixe menu has become an homage of sorts to the chefs of the nouvelle cuisine era. For example, using the Troisgros brothers’ legendary salmon and sorrel or Michel Guerard‘s famous “salade gourmande” as a starting point, Kirkley’s interprets these now classic dishes in a fresh new way, reflecting his own style and personality. On the dessert side, similar treatment has been given to Pierre Herme‘s “plaisir sucre”, adding an element of toasted rye bread to the milk chocolate and hazelnut flavors.

Milk Chocolate Praline Ryeat L2O restaurant, modeled after Herme. Photo courtesy of L2Orestaurant.com

Milk Chocolate Praline Rye at L2O restaurant, modeled after Herme. Photo courtesy of L2Orestaurant.com

As a teacher, I try to impress upon my students the importance of looking beyond our present food culture for inspiration. From time to time, I like to quiz students and cooks, born long after the era of nouvelle cuisine, to gauge their knowledge of our recent history. I’m often saddened by the answers, yet at the same time, inspired to share our rich history with these budding chefs so they can better understand how today’s trends evolved. I find myself advising curious young cooks to devote a portion of the time they spend on the Internet to researching those chefs whose era peaked prior to digital media, whose work wasn’t documented on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

Chez Panisse

Another of my book recommendations. Photo courtesy of goodreads.com.

Though search engines can steer us toward a handful of influential chefs, I encourage cooks to hit the books, literally. Books demand that we stretch our attention span and deepen our focus. I’m happy to see so many ICE students frequenting our 6th floor library, meditating on the printed word. One of my favorite haunts is the uptown bookstore, Kitchen Arts and Letters, which stocks the hot new cookbook releases right next to the indispensable classics. There are dozens of books that I might recommend to those navigating food cultures, but here are a few of my favorites:

This is hardly an exhaustive list, but one that will hopefully lead to discoveries both past and present. A chef’s education never really ends, and in my opinion, that well of inspiration is deepest when we combine an appreciation of the new with a respect for the past. Happy reading!

 

By Liz Castner

 

When you go to pastry school, there are certain things you know you’re going to make. Cake, right? Chocolate, of course. Plus pies, tarts, and maybe some fancy pastries you’ve never heard of.

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But there are certain items that, if you’re like me, you don’t even think about…like croissants. I’ve always loved croissants, but never imagined that I could make them. I don’t know if I ever pictured anyone baking them, except maybe some mystical French elves. It just never occurred to me that I could craft something that amazing—mainly because I didn’t have any understanding of how a croissant is composed, shaped, and becomes so miraculously flaky.

One of my classmates prepares pain au chocolat (like chocolate croissants) with laminated dough.

One of my classmates prepares pain au chocolat (like chocolate croissants) with laminated dough.

That all changed at ICE, the week we learned about laminated dough. It’s a silly name for a very serious thing. When an office worker or an elementary school teacher says they need something laminated, they mean they want their paper encased in a coating of plastic for protection. When a chef says laminated, they mean a dough with layers and layers of butter folded into it.

 

Croissant and danish doughs are laminated, but the most incredible, well-known laminated dough is the one and only puff pastry. This is a big deal in dessert, so naturally, each aspect of the puff pastry process has a French name.

The many layers of butter and dough that make up puff pastry.

The many layers of puff pastry almost look like the rings of a tree.

First, you have to prepare the détrempe (pronounced “day-tromp”), which is a dough containing some butter, but not a lot, and is rolled out fairly thinly. The real butter moment comes next – known as the beurrage (buhr-rahge). Here, butter is pounded in flour and rolled out with a rolling pin. The last step, known as the paton (rhymes with baton), involves placing the butter sheet on top of the détrempe dough and then sealing up the butter within a dough envelope. The paton gets re-folded and rolled out a total of four times before it is ready to be used for production.

Fresh fruit tart with puff pastry crust

Fresh fruit tart with puff pastry crust

My chef described this dough as miraculous, and she’s right. The miracle is the puff. When you bake it, it traps air in a magical way that can’t really be described in words. The other incredible thing about puff pastry its versatility. For example, we made a gateau pithivier (my chef called this one of the most elegant French pastries), which is essentially a cake made of puff pastry with a delicious center of frangipane. From there we baked flaky apple and fresh fruit tarts, cinnamon-sugar palmiers and everyone’s favorite: twisted cheese and herb straws. We also made gorgeous millefeuille by layering pastry cream between layers of cooked puff pastry. I loved it all, and what’s more, each pastry tasted distinctively different.

Millefeuille of layered pastry cream and puff pastry

Millefeuille of layered pastry cream and puff pastry

It’s tough to express how awesome it was to make these desserts. Pulling them out of the oven was like unwrapping a present on Christmas. In addition to puff pastry, we also made croissants and danishes. The dough process is similar, but the fun thing about croissants, of course, is rolling them. After cutting the dough into carefully measured triangles, gently rolling them into their renown crescent shape is the happiest feeling. And oh, how they tasted—buttery, flaky and so, so satisfying. I’m not a mystical French elf, and I made those!

Unbaked croissants, freshly rolled.

Unbaked croissants, freshly rolled.

By Kathryn Gordon

Food Start Up Help is a consulting group started by colleagues at ICE, which assists entrepreneurs in bakery-related start up concept definition and business planning, financing, menu profitability, production and operational efficiency. Today, we celebrate the success story of one of our clients, ICE Professional Pastry Program Alum and Chef/Owner of Cocoamains, Kathleen Escamilla-Hernandez.

Inception and Planning

Kathleen finished the ICE program in January, 2011 and was hired out of her externship at Bouchon Bakery. There she began dreaming about starting her own business – something she had always wanted as a goal.  Food Start Up Help supported Kathleen with initial concept planning and menu design.

Kathleen:  “I had been developing a variety of baked goods but wasn’t sure what products would sell.  Any entrepreneur in the food business needs unbiased feedback on their product. Chefs Jeff and Kathryn helped me develop my menu and figure out where to sell my product.”

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Farmers Market Launch

Since Kathleen is the kind of person who never sleeps, she was able to keep working at her bakery production job while researching farmers markets, obtaining licenses and insurance and locating a commercial kitchen for production. FSUH pitched in with ingredient sourcing and recipe cost analysis for Kathleen’s pound cakes, bar cookies, madeleines and macarons.

Kathleen: “I was able to handle many aspects of my new business independently, but appreciate that Chef Kathryn was able to verify my cost estimates before I finalized my retail and wholesale prices. Nobody should go into business without solid knowledge of their cost structure.”

Packaging and Design

Kathleen got a fantastic lead to sell her macaron line to Macy’s on an exclusive basis, to be sold as a refrigerated grab-n-go item. But at the last minute, before the paperwork was signed, the VP of the purchasing department decided that Macy’s should also sell gift boxes of Kathleen’s macarons.

Kathleen: “Food Start Up Help guided me in choosing a custom packaging design, since I needed very quick production and turn around. My husband works in graphic design, so he worked with the box manufacturer. In the end, I am so happy with my Cocoamains packaging!”

Cocoamains Valentine

Increased Production / Troubleshooting

Cocoamain’s production levels soon outgrew the original commercial kitchen that Kathleen was renting. She located a larger incubator facility, but then had to switch ovens. French-style macarons are sensitive to subtle changes, and chefs often have to reevaluate their baking strategy when they relocate to a new kitchen.

Kathleen: “I actually had to switch ovens two times in my new commercial kitchen location, which is a macaron baker’s nightmare, since each oven requires a bit of tweaking. Chef Kathryn – a macaron expert – held my hand through the production troubleshooting. Thank goodness, I now have a brand new oven and everything is back on track!”

Internet Sales

With her production and packaging logistics all figured out, Kathleen was ready to start selling Cocoamains macarons online. But to sell pre-packaged macarons at Macy’s and on the internet, she needed to provide the nutritional content of her product lines.

Kathleen: “Food Start Up Help analyzed the ingredients per my recipe formulas and helped generate nutritional labels. Now that I have product, packaging and accurate labeling – we’re positioned for our first full year of Cocoamains sales!”

We look forward to seeing Cocoamains distributed at Macy’s and online. It’s been an exciting journey, and we wish Kathleen all the success she deserves. 

If you, like Kathleen, have an idea for a great product, but aren’t sure where to start, consider our “How to Successfully Open a Bakery-Related Business” class at ICE. We also offer a unique, free weekly blog magazine, featuring stories by food entrepreneurs and tips for success by subject matter experts. Learn from their lessons so you don’t have to! www.foodstartuphelp.com

chef scottThis month, in honor of the holidays, we’ve asked our Culinary Arts and Pastry & Baking Arts instructors to share their favorite festive recipes. Last week, Chef Kathryn Gordon shared an Australian holiday treat: mince tartelettes. Today, Chef Scott McMillen, one of our core Pastry & Baking Arts instructors, gets nostalgic about a classic American cookie.

My mom would make snickerdoodles once, and only once, each year. Every Christmas Eve we would leave a plate of cookies and a glass of milk for Santa. The crisp outside and soft interior highlight the sweet holiday spiciness that sticks in my memory. She used the recipe from her Betty Crocker Cookbook – one of the old ones with the recipe pages in a kind of loose leaf binder. Here, I adapt that recipe, substituting light brown sugar for a third of the granulated sugar, which makes the cookie chewier. Unsalted butter replaces the butter/shortening combination from the original recipe, and I use baking powder instead of baking soda and cream of tartar. A touch of freshly ground nutmeg also adds some extra flavor.

snickerdoodlesSnickerdoodles

Ingredients:

  • 2 3/4 cups flour (345g)
  • 2 tsp baking powder (9g)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (3g)
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter (225g)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar (200g)
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar (110g)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (50 g)
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon (8g)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Beat the butter and sugars until light, airy and uniformly blended.
  3. Add the eggs one at a time, waiting for each to be fully incorporated before the next addition. Scrape the bowl between additions.
  4. Combine the flour, salt, baking powder and nutmeg and stir it into the butter mixture until the dough just pulls together. Do not continue to mix past this point or the cookies will be tough. The dough can be refrigerated for up to a week at this point.
  5. Combine the additional 1/4 cup of sugar and tablespoon of cinnamon in a bowl.
  6. Form the dough into about 40 one inch round balls. Roll each ball in the cinnamon sugar until completely and thickly coated.
  7. Space them two inches apart on a greased or parchment lined cookie tray and bake for 8 minutes, or until the cookies’ surface starts to crack. (Bake for 10 minutes if you want a crisper cookie.)

Ever wonder what’s cooking at ICE? Five-Course Friday gives you a snapshot of what we are whipping up weekly. Whether you pop in to a recreational class, catch a professional demo or watch the transformation from student to chef, there is something scrumptious happening daily.

Colorful salad from culinary arts curriculum

A delicious, creamy gorgonzola risotto from proud culinary arts students

Pork chops

Pure heaven! Chocolate banana dessert from pastry and baking students

Who doesn’t love fig this time of year? What a beautiful display from pastry students!

Have a delicious weekend!

Every issue of The Main Course, ICE’s school newsletter, includes a glimpse at the life of students in ICE’s career-training programs. We’re sharing the interviews from the most recent issue here on DICED. Shari Tanaka left a career in textile design to follow her passion in ICE’s Pastry & Baking Arts program.

Shari Tanaka
Pastry Arts

West coast transplant and career changer Shari Tanaka has a history of making beautiful things. Prior to deciding to study pastry at ICE, Tanaka received a degree at FIT and entered the world of textile design. Always up for a challenge, Tanaka chose to pursue her confectionary curiosity in the hopes of someday opening up her own sweet shop. For now, she loves tinkering with recipes, tempering chocolate, creating visually appealing desserts and is happily externing with pastry chef Joe Murphy at the critically acclaimed Jean Georges. She encourages all students to take full advantage of the programs the school has to offer especially the demonstrations at school and volunteer opportunities at events around the city.

 

Do you dream about working as a chef? Ever wonder what it would be like to have a career in the culinary or pastry arts? Have you thought about opening your own food business? Attending an ICE open house is a unique opportunity to learn more about working in the culinary industry and how our 6- to 13-month career-training programs in Culinary Arts, Pastry & Baking Arts and Culinary Management can teach you the skills needed to flourish. Seize this opportunity to achieve your dreams!

In addition to hearing about the programs, you’ll participate in live culinary and pastry demos with ICE’s Chef Instructors. Also, the ICE education team and career services staff will discuss ICE’s training programs, career opportunities and our alumni’s success in the industry. Learn everything you need to know about our programs, admissions, and financial aid.

Following are the details:

Date: Saturday, May 19
Time: Doors open at 10:00 a.m., Presentation begins promptly at 10:30am
Place: The Institute of Culinary Education, 50 W 23rd St., New York, NY
R.S.V.P.: Abbey Florence,aflorence@iceculinary.com or 212-847-0700 ex. 437

Seating for the event is limited. Reserve your spot now to get an inside glimpse at ICE and learn all about how ICE changes lives through culinary education.

Panna Cotta is one of our favorite desserts because it is incredibly easy to make. You just heat cream, add gelatin, pour into molds and let it set. You end up with a luxurious, creamy and elegant dessert. This milk chocolate recipe from ICE Director of Pastry & Baking Arts Programs Nick Malgieri adds a healthy dose of milk chocolate and a dash of vanilla — always a favorite among students as well as who ever may be tasting their treats!

Ingredients
20 fluid ounces milk
3 teaspoons granulated gelatin
20 fluid ounces heavy cream
1/2 vanilla bean, split
1 pound chopped milk chocolate More…