WOOD RIVER JUNCTION - The Chariho Career and Technical Center welcomed a special guest on Tuesday to give students in the Culinary Arts program taste of food service industry post-secondary education opportunities and employment possibilities.
The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), located in Hyde Park, N.Y., visited Chariho for the second consecutive year and gave an engaging presentation.
“The exposure to the industry and the real world is great,” said Linda Musch, Culinary Arts Head Chef at Chariho Career and Tech., “it really gives the students the opportunity to see what is available to them.”
The students split up into three groups for the presentation, and rotated so that each group got to see each hour-long demonstration. There were two food demonstrations, and a CIA admissions presentation.
CIA Associate Professor and Chef Bruce Mattel gave a spirited and engaging presentation to the students during his food demonstration. He spoke of a troubled childhood where he often skipped class to do drugs with friends and vandalized the New York City subway system. However, once he got a job at a local kitchen to stay out of trouble, his passion for culinary arts began to take off, and he is now a successful chef.
“When I come to high schools, I like to make sure students get a snap shot of the industry,” Mattel said, after also giving students a snap shot of himself, and how the industry helped shift his life to a better track.
Mattel demonstrated to the students how to make gravlax, which is a dill cured salmon. He showed step by step how to make the gravlax, and what type of things it can be used for.
He said that the purpose of demonstrating this method to students was to give them a look at advanced preparation methods. These type of methods are an important aspect of the food industry because they can save money, and help restaurants turn a better profit.
“Restaurants buy things like bacon and dried meat,” Mattel said, “or they can just make them.”
For more information, pick up a copy of The Chariho Times.