Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Chefs Morgan and Mitchell Receive Their CEC

Congratulations to CIC Chef Instructors Ward Morgan and Kevin Mitchell for receiving their Certified Executive Chef designation from the American Culinary Federation. This certification is based on years of accumulated practical experience in the industry, 120 continuing education hours, and a rigorous practical and written exam.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Culinary Programs Specialist Marion Sullivan Attends Southern Foodways Symposium

The subject for the 2011 Southern Foodways Symposium was "The Cultivated South."

All of the presentations are now available on Vimeo at:
Podcasts from presentations are available on iTunesU. Click  http://t.co/q4SY72SP to be taken to the SFA iTunes U page.

SFA Executive Director John T. Edge
The Symposium officially began Friday morning with great oysters from Virginia and a rousing speech on the potential of farmers markets. Other topics of the day: Sean Brock discussed olives in the South and poured samples of the first pressing of Georgia olive oil.

Emily Wallace detailed the history of pimento starting in Georgia and ending up in California. Eleanor Finnegan discussed Muslim farms. Ragan Sutterfield discussed the morality of the farm, as seen in chicken raising. Kevin Young offered poetic salute to the Groaning Table. Lunch that day was a “southern bento box” prepared by Korean chef Edward Lee of 610 Magnolia in Louisville.
Chef Lata's Lowcountry Clam and Oyster Stew
On Saturday, Michael McFee read his fabulous poetry. Shirley Sherrod spoke of discriminatory African-American farming practices in the mid-1900’s in Georgia. Elizabeth Engelhardt acquainted us with the practices of exchanging seeds and plants via the farm journals. Rashid Nuri & Richard McCarthy spoke on urban farms. Sara Roahen spoke on the mirliton. Felder Rushing on the Long Beach Radish. CIC Chefs Council member Mike Lata fed 300 people a fabulous lunch and did Charleston proud.
SC native Dori Sanders was the 2011 Craig Claiborne Lifetime Achievement Award winner. Click here (http://southernfoodways.org/hall_of_fame/lifetime/lifetime-awards-dori-sanders.html) to read Ronni Lundy's tribute at the award presentation.
CIC Culinary Programs Specialist
Marion Sullivan
Sunday morning we viewed an amazing Collard Green Opera. The composer says that” The bulk of the text come from a collection of poems entitled Leaves of Greens: the Collard Poems, published in 1984 by the annual Ayden Collard Green Festival in North Carolina; supplemented by a few more poems and traditional hymns. The structure of the piece is in 3 main parts, each dealing with a different aspect of Southern life: relationships with parents, Southern mythology, and relationships with grandparents. Leaves of Greens is scored for soloists, choir, piano and percussion and lasts approximately 25 minutes.” You can watch it, too. http://vimeo.com/31453069

See the SFA Blog for videos (http://southernfoodways.blogspot.com/2011/11/watch-pimento-cheese-please-online_10.html) and more information from the symposium. And you'll also find online a photo gallery (http://jenniferdavick.photoshelter.com/gallery-collection/2011-Southern-Foodways-Alliance-Symposium-Oxford-MS/P0000dGf2c.FXTNA , the event brochure (http://southernfoodways.org/events/symposium/documents/BrochureSFS2011.pdf) , a bibliography (http://southernfoodways.org/events/symposium/documents/BibliographySFS11_001.pdf), and the schedule of events (http://southernfoodways.org/events/symposium/documents/ScheduleSFS11.pdf).
Photos of Mr. Edge and Ms. Sullivan supplied by Jennifer Davick Photography.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

CIC Chef Instructor Scott Stefanelli Attends Chef’s Collaborative Summit 2011 in New Orleans

More than 300 chefs and members of the culinary community gathered in New Orleans, Oct. 23-25, for the Chefs Collaborative third Annual National Summit. The Collaborative, a national network of chefs devoted to changing the sustainable food landscape, was founded in 1993. The organization galvanizes and educates culinary professionals, from farmers and fishers to chefs and writers, on issues where food and sustainability intersect. Summit attendees fully embraced the conference theme of “Hands on New Orleans – Sustainability in Action” with four butchery workshops and demos, charcuterie and classic cocktail workshops, and numerous conversations and practical workshops on timely topics including grass-fed beef, Gulf seafood, dead zones, farm worker justice, and climate change.

Chef Stefanelli writes: "I arrived in New Orleans on Saturday the 21st to experience the city and have an opportunity to dine at a restaurant. My destination to eat dinner was at Herbsaint, Donald Link’s flagship restaurant of his growing restaurant empire. http://www.herbsaint.com/ My dinner consisted of a mackerel crudo with mustard frills, toasted almond and lemon; salad of local mustard greens with buttermilk dressing and country ham; chicken rillette with mustard seed relish and bacon broth; braised lamb neck with butterbeans; and a caramelized banana tart - a very promising start to my visit.

"Sunday morning found me at Lüke Restaurant; one of Chef John Besh’s ventures. http://www.lukeneworleans.com/ I was fortunate to meet Chef Besh as he was having breakfast with his two sons. That evening the opening reception for the conference was held at NOCCA (New Orleans Center for Creative Arts). We were treated to Louisiana oysters from Sal and Al Sunseiri of P and J Oysters of New Orleans, food from the NOCCA high school culinary students, drinks, and a lot of conversations. A brief overview of the conference was presented as well as a presentation on the value of menhaden to our natural fisheries resources survival.

"Monday’s conference kicked off with an introduction from Chef Michael Leviton, Board Chair and owner of Lumiere in Boston followed by a presentation by Dana Cowin, Editor and Chief of FOOD & WINE magazine. The individual breakout sessions started at various locations in proximity to the conference. I attended “Shepherd to the Chef” at Cochon, another of Donald link's restaurants. Presentations were given by the American Lamb Association and Craig Rodgers from Border Springs Farm. Donald Link and Ryan Prewitt demonstrated whole lamb butchery and presented a detailed description of how they process and serve the various cuts.
"The Monday afternoon session was moderated by John T. Edge, Director of The Southern Foodways Alliance, titled “The New Pantry of the South.” This discussion was presented by Glenn Roberts of Anson Mills, Kurt Unkel of Cajun Grains, and Chef Sean Brock of Husk and McCrady's. Discussion revolved around the indigenous grains and rice being grown in the South and how to utilize them, as well as other sustainability issues involving farming and our current state of affairs in food supplies.

 "The centerpiece of this year’s National Summit was the Sustainability Awards dinner at the Riverview Room held on Saturday night featuring Mistress of Ceremonies, Poppy Tooker; guest speaker, author Jessica Harris; and a dinner prepared by Chef Adolfo Garcia of Rio Mar and a team of some of the Crescent City’s best chefs. The 2011 Sustainability Award winners, chosen by a panel of their esteemed culinary peers, are:
- Chef Sam Hayward of Fore Street in Portland, Maine,was honored with the “Sustainer of The Year” award, which recognizes a chef who has been both a great mentor and a model to the culinary community through his purchases of seasonal, sustainable ingredients and the transformation of these ingredients into delicious food. - Fedele Bauccio, founder and CEO of Bon Appétit Management Company (BAMCO) in Palo Alto, Calif., received the “Pathfinder Award,” which recognizes a visionary working in the greater food community who has been a catalyst for positive change within the food system through efforts that go beyond the kitchen. - Sal and Al Sunseri of P & J Oysters in New Orleans. Sal and Al Sunseri received the “Foodshed Champion Award,” which recognizes a food producer (farmer, fisher or artisanal producer) committed to working with chefs who also exemplifies the following principle: Good food begins with unpolluted air, land, and water, environmentally sustainable farming and fishing, and humane animal husbandry. “No institution has played a larger role in the advancement of south Louisiana's oyster industry than New Orleans' P&J Oyster Company, the oldest business of its kind in the United States,” said Kogut. “Since the oil spill, many are worried about the long-term sustainability of this important Louisiana business. P & J Oysters is working with amazing energy to ensure Louisiana oysters have a future."

"On Tuesday morning I attended a workshop on sustainable purchasing practices and how to manage them with the bottom line. After the session I had lunch before my flight at Cochon to cap off my trip. A notable connections that I made was with Megan Westmeyer of Sustainable Seafood Initiative here in Charleston and Chef’s Collaborative board member. 181 Palmer is now a member of the SSI and will be listed as a partner in their new brochure. I also met with Megan post summit to review the summit and go over better sustainable seafood practices for the restaurant."

CIC Baking and Pastry Coordinator Chef Bernd Gronert and Baking and Pastry Adjunct Chef Instructor Kristy Holdgate go to UGA's Better Process Control School

Chefs Gronert and Holdgate went to the University of Georgia in Athens on November 8th and 9th to get certified in “Low acid and acidified food in thermally sealed containers” at the Better Process Control School. The two day class was very intense and included 9 tests, each of which had to be passed in order to get nationally certified by the Food and Drug Administration and the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service.

Congratulations! Chef Holdgate and Chef Gronert are now nationally certified in the following areas:
    Chef Gronert says that "it was a great opportunity and eye opener to realize and study the new rules and regulations that the FDA and USDA require every business to have in place from now on in order to produce and sell thermally processed low acid and acidified foods.
    We certainly will forward the information we acquired to our eager students in our Baking and Pastry department as well as to all the faculty and staff."

CIC Chef Instructor Kevin Mitchell Featured in Black Enterprise Magazine

In an article titled "Feast on This: a smorgasbord of ways to profit from your passion for food," Chef Mitchell joins a stellar list that includes celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson, celebrity restaurateur Ludacris, Cooking Channel star Gerry Garvin, renowned author Jessica Harris, and others.

"Holding office hours and preparing lesson plans are things all teachers do. But how many can say they taught ice carving or sauce making?" To read more, catch "The Teacher" at http://www.onlinedigitalpubs.com/publication/index.php?i=86175&p=8 and a Q & A at: http://www.blackenterprise.com/2011/11/17/how-i-did-it/ 

Monday, November 14, 2011

Wear Our Cake and Eat it, Too: An Edible Cake Dress Created by 3 Creative Students

Wear our Cake and Eat it Too Cake Bride
Katelyn Selin, Kait Ingram, and Sandrea Park Welch are the Cake Dress Artists behind this incredible edible feat. Melissa Herald is the Cake Dress Model. The CIC students took on this project as an attraction for the 2011 CIC Taste of Charleston Iron Chef Competiton. All we can say is wow!
Making the cake dress Making the cake dress
Putting the cake dress on The bride poses with the dress makers
A slice of the cake dress A close up of the dress design

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

CIC Team Creates Tablescape for Charity Event

Chefs Vagasky, Wilson, and Sonoski, and Instructor Buzzelli

Tablescapes, an event to benefit Lowcountry Orphan Relief, took place at the Marriott on November 4- 6. Teams were asked to create a tablescape for the dinner of their dreams. The CIC team created a Culinary Cornucopia Dream Dinner, with "guests" who were superstars in the hospitality industry: The King of Culinary, Escoffier; the Queen of Culinary, Julia Child; the King of Beverage, Dom Perignon; and the Hospitality Queen, Emily Post. "Just as our dinner guests created the cornucopia that is the hospitality industry, our students and faculty have combined their inspired talents to create a royal Tablescape."

Congratulations to Baking and Pastry Chef Instructor David Vagasky, who made the bread cornucopias with his Artisan Breads class; Baking and Pastry Chef Instructor Kelly Wilson, who made the marizipan fruit and chocolate placecards with her Advanced Baking class; Baking and Pastry Adjunct Instructor Heather Sonoski, who made the gum paste leaves, acorns, and butterfly with her Wedding Cakes class; and Hospitality Instructor Lisa Buzzelli, who worked on organization, execution, place settings, linen, decor, and break down with her Catering Management class.

CIC Hospitality Department Head Patricia Agnew and Hospitality Instructor Paul Teehan attend Regional Fall 2011 Southeast Federation meeting for CHRIE

The Regional Fall 2011 Southeast Federation meeting for CHRIE (Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education) is held once annually as an opportunity for members to present abstracts for research projects conducted during the year and to conduct the annual business of the SECHRIE membership group. This year’s meeting was held on the campus of Tuskegee University, private, coeducational, historically black institution of higher education in Tuskegee, Alabama.

Presentations included studies in perceptions of green practices in a university foodservice operation; sustainability training and practices for lodging operations; critical success factors in wine tourism; training needs of bed and breakfast operators; and correlations between convention and visitor’s bureau investors and inventory statistics, among others. The conference concluded with an informative tour of the Tuskegee University campus.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Almost Famous Chef winner Steve Seguin moves on to the Southeast regional competition

On Tuesday Helen Hays and Steve Seguin competed to see who would represent TTC in the Almost Famous Chef Southeast regional competition. Each had 90 minutes to complete their dish.

Helen’s dish was a Crusted Red Snapper and Sautéed Shrimp with Mango Marmalade served over a bed of fresh fennel and jicama with citrus fruits and a passion fruit curry sauce, red curry oil, and cilantro oil. 

Steve’s dish was a Slow-Braised Beef Short Rib braised in Fat Tire beer and Dr. Pepper, served over a sunchoke and local goat cheese puree and accompanied by pickled apples, roasted baby onions, mushrooms, red and yellow beets, and some of the braising jus.

Chef Mitchell, Chef Morgan, and Chef Stefanelli judged the food and interviewed each competitor about their dish. The selection was based on the students composure, ability to describe their dish, and how they approached the task, with the biggest part of the decision based upon the quality and flavor of each student's dish.While both dishes were outstanding and worthy of competing at the regional competition, due to the amount of schools entered CIC could only send one student. After a long discussion they choose Steve and his short rib dish.

The chefs will be working with Steve to fine tune his recipe, equipment lists and helping with practice time to be prepared for the Southeast regional which will be sometime in January at a location to be determined.


Anna Lone's Swamp Hag's House won First Place in the Halloween Haunted Gingerbread House Contest!

Runner-up is Dorotea Sotirova. Congrats to all the contestants! Enjoy the pictures of all the creative houses.

First Place by Anna Lone

Runner-Up by   Dorotea Sotirova

CIC Team Will Represent South Carolina at the ACF Southeast Regional Student Competition

Congratulations to the CIC ACF team for winning the student competition, beating out the Art Institute by 1/2 point. They earned a bronze medal and will represent South Carolina at the ACF Southeast Regional Student Competition in Winston-Salem, NC on February 22, 2012.

The culinary team is comprised of Ms. Helen Hayes, Mr. Lem Reina, Ms. Jinene Howard, Ms. Danita Carptentier, and Ms. Ashlee Washington.The team’s managers are Chef Mitchell and Chef Morgan. These students have worked very hard since June, every week, and on weekends, perfecting their skills and individual dishes that made up part of a four course meal. They have taken time out of their personal lives to make a difference. They have made us all proud of their accomplishments. This win represents more than just a medal, it represents their future.