The Making of a Chef
Mastering Heat at the Culinary Institute of America
By Michael Ruhlman
(Henry Holt and Co., Hardcover, 9780805046748, 320pp.)
Publication Date: December 1997
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The eye-opening book that was nominated for a 1998 James Beard Foundation award in the Writing on Food category.
In the winter of 1996, Michael Ruhlman donned hounds-tooth-check pants and a chef's jacket and entered the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, to learn the art of cooking. His vivid and energetic record of that experience, The Making of a Chef, takes us to the heart of this food-knowledge mecca. Here we meet a coterie of talented chefs, an astonishing and driven breed. Ruhlman learns fundamental skills and information about the behavior of food that make cooking anything possible. Ultimately, he propels himself and his readers through a score of kitchens and classrooms, from Asian and American regional cuisines to lunch cookery and even table waiting, in search of the elusive, unnameable elements of great cooking.
Michael Ruhlman has written extensively for The New York Times. He is the author of Boys Themselves. He lives in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.
"[A] well-reported and heartfelt cook's tale . . . Ruhlman communicates the passion that draws the acolyte to this precise and frantic profession. "-The New York Times Book Review