So what does it take to be a good cook? A mastery of cookery basics, an educated palate, product knowledge, creativity and innovation all come to mind. A combination of old-school classical cookery and modern cooking’s emerging technologies create a new measure of success.
Efficiency, environment and economy are all incorporated into modern cuisine. In a rapidly changing world, being able to produce food quickly and efficiently while retaining quality has become a science.
The School of Hospitality and Culinary Arts recognizes the importance of introducing students to the latest technologies, which is why the equipment at the Hokanson Centre for Culinary Arts includes:
Sous-vide - This literally means “under vacuum.” Food is vacuum-sealed in a pouch and slowly cooked in a water bath at low temperatures. As a result, foods become tender without losing their original colour, nutrients and texture. A thermal circulator maintains temperature and cooking time cycles, and circulates heat distribution.
Anti-Griddle - Instead of creating heat, this griddle produces sub-zero temperatures, allowing you to almost instaneously freeze food products. The Anti-Griddle works well for creating frozen desserts, sauces and mousses.
Thermal blender - It does everything a heavy-duty food blender does and more – it even cooks at temperatures between 4-40 C (40-105 F). This makes it ideal for preparing heat-sensitive soups and sauces like beurre blanc and hollandaise.
Rational Ovens – Also known as combi-ovens, these state-of-the-art programmable ovens do it all:
- moist heat
- dry heat
- combination heat
- finishing (holding) cycle
The oven is pre-programmed to perfectly cook a variety of food products, but chefs can also create their own programs to meet specific needs. And it includes a built-in cleaning cycle.
Smoking Gun – Chefs love their toys – this hand-held smoke gun is used to infuse smoke flavour, particularly to foods prepared sous-vide.