The truth about Culinary Arts


Dakota Sands

“CHEFFY”: The teacher who has the biggest role in the Culinary Arts Academy, Chef Newman, ready for the day ahead of her.

Most of my friends and other students that I talk to about Culinary Arts think that all we do is cook, cook, and more cooking. That is only half the story.

Aside from cooking we are learning how to become leaders and managers.  We are also researching how to run a business and understanding terms that will help us in the kitchen and in the real world. Like the term ”slurry”, it is a mixture of equal parts corn starch and water. We tend to use it if we want to make a thicker sauce like a teriyaki sauce for a stir fry.

With Culinary Arts comes responsibility while in the kitchen, Chef Newman needs to know that she can trust you on your own to follow the proper procedures at all times. One wrong move and you will have to deal with the consequences. For an example, a chocolate chip cookie recipe says to add  1/2 teaspoon of salt and you add 1 tablespoon, the cookies are going to be really salty and it will not taste very good.

If you were going to sell those cookies you would not make a big profit, instead you would lose money and potentially future customers, and because people might not trust what you are selling if people tell one another and the word spreads to not come back to your bakery.

Also in Culinary Arts we cater events and serve at them as well. My friends Tia Daniel, Britney Campbell and I have catered two events this year. While Britney was helping Chef with plating me and Tia were severs for the event. We had to wear a buttoned up, long sleeve shirt with a black bowtie. We actually looked like servers in a restaurant.

Both times we catered to the events we would get good reviews. When we would ask Chef the next day about how the events went, she said that it went  great! The food was incredible, and they said that we were polite and professional.

I have to thank Chef Newman for helping us prepare, we had practice runs because there is a lot to remember about being a server. We learned that the place-ware has to be a thumb nail away from the table, the silver ware is set up by spoons, forks, and knife (faced inward) in that order. Their drink goes to the right in front of their silverware. When we serve, we serve from the left of the customer, when they are done with their meal we take the plate from their right.

When I tell other what we do, they usually say I think I am glad I am in the career I am in. Then I tell them I wouldn’t trade it for the world, even though it can be stressful to get the dish to be perfect, cleaning up before the bell, and washing, rinsing, then sanitizing the dishes.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.