Finally, It's Time!

I've always been an Autumn guy, but as I sit here in my suburban Chicago home and look out my back window into our yard with it's various flower and vegetable beds, I can't help but feel overwhelmed at what an amazing time of year it is right now. Late summer! It's literally a feast for the senses. As I write, the cicadas are singing their nostalgia-inducing song; a lawnmower is buzzing in the distance, and the gentle peeps from the neighborhood bird population tell me it's just about their bedtime. The air is thick with the smell of cut grass, and the recent rains leave an aroma of soil and wet sidewalks.

Hearing and smelling aside, there is one late summer sight that is so completely catching my eye that it makes it difficult to concentrate on anything else. We planted a lot of tomatoes this spring, and now the bright red fruits are suddenly exposing themselves all over our yard. We've been waiting all summer, and finally their time has come!

If you've never tried before, growing your own tomatoes is a fairly simple and very satisfying thing to do. A bite from a super ripe, sun-warmed tomato is something that all chefs dream about, and it puts every single super market tomato you've ever purchased to shame.

Here's what to do with a big, juicy, just picked, homegrown tomato: Procure a nice, thick slice of your favorite bread. Toast it. Scrape the toasted surface with a peeled clove of garlic, and then drizzle just a bit of extra virgin olive oil onto it. Then, while it's still warm from the toaster, lay as many thick slices of gorgeous, late summer tomatoes as you can on top of it. Sprinkle them with a bit of good salt, and then grind some black pepper on top. Next, crumble just a bit of your favorite blue cheese over everything. Last, finish with a couple of leaves of torn basil, and you've got something that's almost too good to eat. Late summer won't last much longer.

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            5 Program(s) Found
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
            • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
            • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
            • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
            • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
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            Baker College is the largest independent college in Michigan with the most focused approach to education and training available. Our mission is to prepare you for meaningful employment.

            5 Program(s) Found
            • Received the 2015 and 2013 “Cooking School of the Year” Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • Externship opportunities are available at numerous famous New York City restaurants.
            • Campus is located near downtown Manhattan, within walking distance of many popular attractions such as the Radio City Music Hall.
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            Good for Working Adults
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            L'Ecole Culinaire , Saint Louis
            • Offers educational opportunities for the aspiring, career-minded chef.
            • Students are trained by professional chefs and spend the majority of their final term working in the campus restaurant to learn all phases of the culinary industry.
            • St. Louis campus offers new Food Truck Entrepreneurship courses.
            • Has a student-run food truck that tours around St. Louis.
            • All campuses have a public restaurant where food is prepared and served by students.
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            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
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            2 Program(s) Found
            • Students get real-world experience through the required externship at the end of the program.
            • Curriculum includes laboratory sessions, academic preparation and hands-on experience.
            • Program objectives are to provide students with skills needed for cooking wholesome, attractive, food preparations and to assist graduates in obtaining positions in the food service industry.
            • Accredited by the American Culinary Federation (ACF).
            • Has campuses in Melbourne, Sarasota, and Tallahassee, Florida
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            4 Program(s) Found
            • Hands-on culinary education with focused attention on each student
            • An ACCSC School of Excellence with multiple “Best Vocational Cooking School” awards*
            • 15,000 graduates, including celebrities like Bobby Flay, David Chang, and Christina Tosi*
            • Programs in Culinary Entrepreneurship, Professional Culinary Arts, Professional Pastry Arts, and much more
            • Campuses in New York and Silicon Valley with nearby housing available
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            Sullivan University is a private institution of higher learning dedicated to providing educational enrichment opportunities for the intellectual, social and professional development of its students. The institution offers career-focused curricula with increasing rigor from the certificate through diploma, associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree levels. Throughout those curricula, the university seeks to promote the development of critical thinking, effective verbal and written communication, computer literacy, and teamwork as well as an appreciation for life-long learning, cultural diversity and the expression of professionalism in all activities. At the graduate level, the university also seeks to promote a culture of research.