It's Just So Good

Even though I am a chef instructor at the uber-French oriented Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Chicago, more often than not, good old American comfort food classics tend to be the dishes I find myself dreaming of, drooling over, or devouring. It's not that I don't sincerely enjoy French food and cooking techniques...I do. But the honest simplicity of certain recipes from the American comfort/soul food/picnic-fare genre speaks to me on a level that needs no translation.

The one dish that I am referring to today is, of course, fried chicken. Golden, crunchy, salty, spicy, juicy, tender, soul satisfying deep-fried poultry goodness. There is almost nothing better. I'm sure there are many people that don't share my passion for this classic preparation, and that's fine...I don't understand why, but to each their own.

In my class yesterday evening, I was teaching my students how to break down a whole chicken into pieces suitable for use in any number of recipes. The particular cooking technique and recipe they were focusing their attention on for this class was a saute © of a chicken breast served with a classic French sauce called Chasseur, and a potato preparation known as Pommes Rissoler. This is certainly a very tasty dish, but can you guess what I did with the few extra chickens that we had leftover? That's right. It took me no time at all to realize that if we had extra chickens, we were going to cut them up, soak the pieces in buttermilk, season them, dredge them in spicy flour, and deep-fry them at 300 degrees Fahrenheit until they were GBD (chef instructor speak for golden brown and delicious). This was the chicken preparation I was dreaming of and drooling over all night...my apologies to the Poulet Saute Chassuer aux Pommes Rissoler.

While it’s true that I have one taste of each of my students' creations for purposes of constructive criticism, just one taste of fried chicken is never enough, so I made sure that I ate four or five pieces in between bites of the French haute cuisine "poulet". And when this chef eats fried chicken, it has to be drizzled with honey and hot sauce. If you have yet to try it that way, don't wait too much longer...you're depriving yourself of one of the world's most delicious experiences.

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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.
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            • 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.
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            • 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*
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            • Received the 2015 and 2013 “Cooking School of the Year” Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).
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            • Campus is located near downtown Manhattan, within walking distance of many popular attractions such as the Radio City Music Hall.
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            • Ranked among the Best Colleges in the South in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
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            • A private institution founded in 1977 with a current total undergraduate enrollment of over 15,00.
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            Lackawanna College is the premier, private, accredited two-year college serving the people of northeastern Pennsylvania. With a focus on keeping higher education affordable and accessible to our immediate community, Lackawanna draws 80 percent of its student population right from our own region.

            With a main campus situated in downtown Scranton, Lackawanna’s expanding footprint also includes satellite centers in Hawley, Hazleton, New Milford, and Towanda.

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            • 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.
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            Auguste Escoffier Schools of Culinary Arts , Online (campus option available)
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