Friday, January 29, 2010

Best of Show, 3 Silvers and 10 Bronzes Medals

Students, Alumni and Chef Instructors Shine in 2010 ACF Sponsored Ben E. Keith Culinary Competition.

Competitions play a vital role in culinary arts as they continually raise the standards of culinary excellence. There is no better way for a culinarian to hone their craft than by putting their skills and knowledge to the test in a competitive format. The American Culinary Federation (ACF) holds competitions throughout the year. Most recently, the Culinary Institute LeNôtre competed in the ACF sponsored Ben E. Keith Culinary Show.

The January 2010 Ben E. Keith Food Show was again a smashing success for the Culinary Institute LeNôtre! Chef Pastry Instructor Phillippe Richard, CEPC triumphed for the second year in a row in taking the gold medal for Best of Show.

Pastry students came out on top of the baking competition! Michael Jones was awarded a silver and bronze medal for his creations. A silver medal was awarded to Janeth Sanchez, and Alumna Elizabeth Balderas for their show pieces. Bronze medals were awarded to Crystal Beccera, Joann Casey, Tisha Gibson, Judith Hastings, Marco Leyva, Lori Scott, Cristal Tamez and Melissa Young. Certificates were also awarded to Jonathan Quiles, Priscilla Beltran, Katerina Kyriazis and Patti Bernard.

Congratulations on a great effort students, chef instructors and alumni!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Eggnog Custard with Ginger Snaps

An interesting way to serve eggnog for dessert!

About custard? Ancient Roman cooks recognized the binding properties of eggs. They were experts at creating several egg-based dishes, most notably patinae, crustades and omlettes. These foods were either savory (made with cheese, meat, pepper etc.) or sweet (flavored with honey, nuts, cinnamon etc.).

Food historians generally agree that custard, the sweet almost pudding-like substance we Americans know today, dates to the Middle ages. At that time custard was eaten alone or used as fillings for pies, tarts, pastry, etc. Flan is probably the most famous and widely adapted custard dessert in the world. It is important to note that custard was not unique to Europe. Students at Culinary Institute LeNôtre study pastry and baking arts in many of the degree and diploma programs. Try this lovely dessert!

Portion: six 3oz servings
  • Eggnog 1pt
  • Egg yolks 6ea
  • Ginger Snaps 6 cookies
  • Whipped Cream 1cup
  1. Preheat Oven 275°- 300°F
  2. Place eggnog in a pot and heat over low heat on stove
  3. Place 6 egg yolks in medium size bowl and slowly pour in the warm eggnog
  4. Place mixture into 6 individual 3oz oven proof ramekins or neat serving cups
  5. Place cup in a half pan 2 inches deep and place pan in oven
  6. Take a water pitcher with water and fill pan half way up with water to where the water covers half of the serving dishes
  7. Cook for 45 minutes or until mixture sets, do not rush it.
  8. Cool the custard and sprinkle, top off with whipped cream and crumble ginger snaps just before serving
Bon Appétit

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Graduate Gary Carter – Now part of the LeNôtre Legacy Too!

Gary was chosen as Student Speaker of the 64th Commencement Graduation. Like the Fox News video below Gary Carter will make a career change. He is planning for his future, after his retirement as a public school teacher and coach. His love of culinary arts is leading the way.

His journey to a culinary arts profession is unique, as is each student’s story. When his wife became seriously ill with cancer, Gary took over the household cooking responsibilities completely; his wife previously handled 90% of the cooking. Today, she is a cancer survivor.

Gary knew how to cook but felt his repertoire was limited. He turned to the food channel and tried some of the techniques shown and found he had a knack for what was presented. He saw that 4-6 years down the road he could start a second career in culinary arts. He knew he wanted to learn Classic French cooking; have the solid grounding in technique. Gary plans include choosing an culinary arts career that offers flexibility such as personal chef, caterer or perhaps presenting home cooking lessons.

When investigating the right culinary institute Gary knew LeNôtre had the reputation as the premier school, moreover when compared to other institutes he could see that LeNôtre was not only reputation but stood out for its intensive “hands on” approach and not "lecture and try”. As a teacher he knows the difference. The techniques were ingrained into the students so that they could be applied not only to the recipe at hand, but to enable students to extend the application of these techniques beyond the classroom recipes.

What he found at the school was a staff that was 110% committed, knowledgeable and responsive so LeNôtre students enter their new careers with exceptional skills.

Asked why he was chosen to be student speaker at the graduation ceremony, he modestly replied that as a teacher he is certainly comfortable with public speaking and how to speak from the heart. Best quoted directly from his speech:

"Visitors, as you go throughout the building you will see photos of Mr. LeNôtre and his father and the legacy that they have built and continue to build. You are an amazing man sir, thank you for The Culinary Institute LeNôtre your vision and passion in the pursuit of excellence. You sir, are indeed changing lives. I never will forget your orientation to the new students that you do in which you emphasized that the spoon is one of the most important tools because it is with it that we train our pallet. I will always have a spoon in my pocket."

Bon Appétit

Monday, January 11, 2010

LeNotre made Fox Morning News!

READ ALL ABOUT IT - More and more people have decided to make a major career change later in life and one of those job sectors attractive to many is the culinary arts.

FOX 26 Morning News Extra anchor Ruben Dominguez visits Culinary Institute LeNôtre in north Houston to report on how students are learning the skills to become chefs. Wonderful reviews!