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The Making of a Chef: Mastering Heat at the Culinary Institute of Americaby Michael Ruhlman
Synopses & Reviews
Now in paperback, the eye-opening book that was nominated for a 1998 James Beard Foundation award in the Writing on Food category.
In the winter of 1996, Michael Ruhlman donned hounds-tooth-check pants and a chef's jacket and entered the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, to learn the art of cooking. His vivid and energetic record of that experience, The Making of a Chef, takes us to the heart of this food-knowledge mecca. Here we meet a coterie of talented chefs, an astonishing and driven breed. Ruhlman learns fundamental skills and information about the behavior of food that make cooking anything possible. Ultimately, he propels himself and his readers through a score of kitchens and classrooms, from Asian and American regional cuisines to lunch cookery and even table waiting, in search of the elusive, unnameable elements of great cooking.
"Anyone who is thinking about attending a culinary school, or even getting into cooking period, should read The Making of a Chef to understand the intensity of effort, the sincerity and the focus that all cooks must have in order to succeed." Charlie Trotter, chef-owner of Charlie Trotter's
"Ruhlman's love of cooking bubbles on every page." Marcia Goldberg, Plain Dealer
In the ultimate food-lover's fantasy, journalist Michael Ruhlman dons chef's jacket and houndstooth-check pants to join the students in Skills One at the Culinary Institute of America, the most influential cooking school in the country. His goal is to document the training of America's chefs from the first classroom to the Culinary's final kitchen, the American Bounty Restaurant. The result becomes more than a rote reportage of a school for cooks. Ruhlman learns to cook as though his future depends upon it, and this complete immersion enables him to create the most vivid and energetic memoir of a genuine culinary education on record. He learns fundamental skills and information about the behavior of food that make cooking anything possible. But he also finds that a professional cook needs more than just knowledge and skill. Ultimately Ruhlman propels himself and his readers through a score of kitchens and classrooms, from Asian and American regional cuisines to lunch cookery and even table waiting, in search of the elusive, unnameable elements of great cooking.
About the Author
Michael Ruhlman has written extensively for The New York Times. He is the author of Boys Themselves. He lives in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.
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