Tuesday, August 24, 2010

....And Now With Carrots

Week 2, Day 7-
We reviewed for our two written tests to be administered this week by playing Jeopardy in class. The tests will cover four chapters of Safety and Sanitation and various sections of the Professional Cooking text. Additionally, we also listened to a lecture on menu development and creation and finally more knife cuts.

Menu development is a bit more complicated than one would think. Once you really start to break things down like your menu, your kitchen layout, your customer base, required equipment etc... it's no wonder so many restaurants fail. There are a lot more things to consider than just what type food you want to serve.

Did you know there are six types of menus? I guess, I knew there were several types, but I had no idea what they were. It's pretty interesting really. Here are the basics; Static menus offer the same dishes each day and may change at intervals monthly or seasonally. A chain restaurant would be a good example of this. A Cycle menu changes daily for a certain period of time and then repeats, like a school's cafeteria. Ruth's Chris steak house is an A la Carte menu. Where each individual item is listed separately with it's own price. A new trend in some restaurants in response to the economic down turn is a Table d'hote menu. A fixed menu is offered, a complete meal at a set price where you can choose from 3 salads, 2 appetizers, 3 entries for $20. Applebee's two for $20 would be an example of this type. Prix Fixe or fixed price is where one price is given for a selection from each of the courses offered. And finally a Tasting menu may have 5-6 courses are served in small portions. These generally may cover a restaurants entire menu or may be special dishes the chef as picked out. Food for thought....

During the lab we mimicked our practical exam we are taking on Thursday.  We were given 1 1/2 hours, one potato and two carrots. We were to complete nine of the cuts we've learned so far. Surprise!!! We haven't even used carrots yet!! Well, crap! Believe it of not, they are a bit more difficult to get the right size out of them as they are smaller and more fibrous. The fibers of the carrot can make the cuts a bit wonky sometimes. This could get interesting...

Sample Practical #1- Knife Cuts


  1. I'm starting culinary management tomorrow. I'm 42. Great blog. Please keep it up!