Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Next Generation

Besides my fun job creating cakes for weddings and any other celebration we can think of(there's always a reason to eat cake), I am also a chef instructor at a culinary school. Three days a week for five weeks each quarter, I share my experience and ideas with the next generation of pastry chefs, bakers and cake decorators. All that new energy and enthusiasm.
Aren't those all the same thing you ask? Not really. Every industry has it's own vocabulary and sub sects within the general category. I know I have generalized other industries, so here is my contribution to culinary clarity:
The culinary world breaks down first into savory or sweet-definite personality differences here. Just put them in the same room together and listen to them talk. Then the sweet side breaks down even further. Bakers and Pastry Chefs have very different traits. Think bread(really good bread, artisan bread, not grocery store sliced bread). Then think of those amazing plated desserts with intricate garnishes of sugar, chocolate or whisper thin cookies. Completely separate disciplines and patience requirements.
I, myself, have the patience to sit making gumpaste flowers or pipe designs for hours, but would rather just eat my bread instead of making it. No patience in that whole waiting for the yeast to rise thing! Now ask a baker to pipe cornelli lace on a cake. Do you hear the screaming?
Cake decorators/designers are sometimes most focused on the outside of a cake. I am originally a pastry chef by training and career path and have tried to combine the best of both worlds for my cake company. I love to eat, so flavor combinations have always been my thing.
What will the next generation bring to the world? Can't wait to see.

No comments: