Nearly 50 Chef to Chef Conference attendees learned about Latin cuisine as part of a special education partnership with the Culinary Institute of America.
Just before the 2014 Chef to Chef Conference officially kicked off, a group of participants attended a class led by Chef Sergio Remolina on Sunday, March 2 at the San Antonio campus of the Culinary Institute of America (CIA).
Inspired by Spanish, Caribbean, and Central/South American cuisine, the class produced four Latin-accented recipes. The dishes demonstrated by Chef Remolina, the school’s Director of Latin Studies, included a cilantro cream soup, ceviche Sinaloa-style, short ribs, and rice pudding in three textures.
“The class held at the CIA campus was excellent and a highlight of the conference for me,” said Daniel Pliska, CEC, Executive Chef/Assistant Manager, University Club of Missouri/University Catering, Columbia, Mo.
“I particularly enjoyed the regional points on the ingredients and origins of some of the dishes like ceviche, adobo and molé,” said Pliska, who later did a demonstration presentation on International Cuisine during the Conference, and also led a “Chef to Chef Live” breakout session.
Jean-Christophe Setin, Executive Chef for the Tampa (Fla.) Yacht and Country Club and a four-time Chef to Chef attendee, also found that this year’s class added extra value to his experience.
“The instructor was very knowledgeable and comfortable in his element,” said Setin. “The class opened my eyes to traditional Mexican cuisine.”
Three-time Conference attendee David Pinckney, Executive Chef at Cherokee Country Club, Knoxville, Tenn., was eager to see the demo facilities and cooking stations at the CIA facility.
“I’ve been teaching cooking classes in Knoxville for more than 20 years and am always looking to improve upon them,” he said. “The facility was top-notch and the class was highly valuable.”
Afterward, the Latin Flavors attendees were invited to taste the dishes for lunch and given a full tour of the campus.
“The CIA class was quite an experience,” said Nelson Millan, Executive Chef at San Antonio Country Club, who also presented on Innovative Buffets at the Conference, led a Chef to Chef Live breakout session, and served as its Local Coordinator. “It was literally an open window to authentic and ancient Latin/Mexican cooking ingredients and how to process them to achieve unique flavors and textures that are still foreign to most chefs and consumers in America, yet easy to embrace and apply.
“Chef Remolina showed us just the tip of what I consider to be the next driving force of food in North America and in world-class cuisine,” Millán added. “I wanted the class to last forever.”
All Chef to Chef attendees had the opportunity to see the San Antonio CIA facility during a reception that was held at the campus on Monday night of the Conference. (For a full report on the 2014 Chef to Chef Conference, see the April issue of Club & Resort Business.)
The 2015 Chef to Chef Conference, which promises to be even more educational, will be held on March 1-3, 2015 at the Westin Savannah (Ga.) Harbor Golf Resort & Spa.