Welcome to the Kitchen

When you cook for yourself or friends, it's one thing. But when you serve the general public, it's a completely different ball game: your food must be properly cooked, well-seasoned, on time and impeccably plated.

My classmate and I recently started worked in the French Culinary Institute's restaurant, L'Ecole. We hope we're ready.

I'm glad to have started off in the pastry rotation. The pace doesn't seem as frightening as we concentrated on making red-wine poached pear desserts and trios of pot de creme (espresso, chocolate and dulce de leche). We've had to stay later in the kitchen than other students, but I figure we can ease our way into the other stations and learn from our classmates.

The "real kitchen" environment isn't that different from the class because our chefs are very open to answering questions and correct any mistakes. That said, there's still a twinge of pressure hanging over your head as you wonder if the pears are poached properly or if you're going to overcook the custard.

All the pressure forces you to focus more. The chefs expect more out of you and the months we've spent learning how to recognize when a sauce reaches a right consistency and honing our knife skills pays off.

It's a Friday night service today, so I expect business to pick up. Are we ready? I think so. I'll be giving you more dispatches from L'Ecole in the coming months.

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            Culinary Arts (AS)
            • Program areas include Culinary Arts, Culinary Management, and more
            • Students are taught cooking styles from around the globe, including Classical European, Asian, and Latin cuisine
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            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef
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            Intensive Sommelier Training
            • 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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            Culinary Arts
            • 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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