Thursday, October 15, 2015

Trip to the Hudson Valley near Hyde Park NY - Part One: Culinary Institute of American (CIA)

I was shocked to discover I'd taken 177 photos!

Peggy Agnew was my personable seat mate. She has beautiful blue eyes. We talked about how difficult it was to know what to wear. But the weather was beautiful and I'd guess about 65 degrees.

What dyou think, Peg?

Our first stop was  the Culinary Institute of America. 

My friends Rich and Ada had been there.

 The campus is gorgeous.
 Relying on my very imperfect memory, the school was founded by two women who wanted to create jobs for returning veterans from WW2.

It took off and only one bldg remains from those days. Now they have bldgs or classrooms funded by Marriot and Anheuser Bush.

 Our most excellent tour guide was Michael, whose last name reminds me of Razumovsky as in the Razumosky Quartetby Beethoven.

It's a miracle I remember the name of the quartet, which I'm listening to now on YouTube.  The first violinist, an Asian woman, reminds me of the Chinese woman at the Chinese food kiosk at the Giant.

Michael kept reminding us to leave a path for the students.

Enrollment is evenly divided between men and women, tho they have different concentrations. Tuition is about $22,000 per semester. 

To get in, you need to have worked at a restaurant in any capacity, including bus boy, that makes their own food. Appleby's, he said, doesn't count. But Bonnet Lane Diner in Abington, PA, would. Read a short story I wrote about the place

I said to Michael that the cost of tours such as ours probly lessens the amount of the tuition.

It goes into the general scholarship fund, he said. He wants to be a restaurant consultant. He has never held a tray or been a server. 

Image result for waiter drops food
Classes are small. This lecture hall discussed mushrooms today. Mushrooms from all over the world. And their properties. They also have lectures about wine, getting special dispensation from NY State to allow minors to taste the various wines. I think there are something like 8 they've gotta taste in one class and learn their qualities.

 Wait a sec! This is the classroom.

 Below is a lovely courtyard.
 Why do we love chocolate so much, I asked M.  B'c it's got sugar and fat.
 Unprecedented, said M, that we were allowed behind the scenes and into the kitchen.
They now make sugarfree desserts using various artificial sweeteners. Me, with my diabetes, will not eat these.

I did eat a cream puff filled with coffee ice cream and topped with whipped cream. 

 Some milk substitutes. When I make cream soups I use Almond Milk. When the CIA students make cream soups they learn the technique to make them, rathan learning a recipe.
 Hey, let's use Kitchen Aide mixers. They also have an ice cream maker. My late mom/law Margie Deming of Houston would make everyone homemade ice cream for his/her birthday. I would choose peach.

Possibly an ice cream maker. Possibly not. What else could it be?

Michael, help!

 Every bit of these wedding cakes is edible.
 Wanted to get this pic of the pocket of the chef's uniform. The pants are black/white checkered. Each student begins with 18 paper chef hats. You must budget them during each 3-week session. Is that correct... 3 week? Or five weeks.
Here's the gal who made my cream puffs.

 Is that a rifle, I asked Bob. No, it's a camera, he said. He's the filmmaker around here.

Finally we're in the American Bounty dining room. Menu is above, plus I wrote down a few short stories Carole suggested from a class she's taking. Let's see if I can remember em.

Julian Barnes' Evermore.  There's two others by authors I've never heard of. Evermore was first published in 1995 in the New Yorker but you need a subscription to read it.

 First course was a cream of oyster soup. Fingerling potatoes were placed in julienned strips at the top.
 Sat with Kenna, who lives in Mt Airy, and three of her friends. We'd traveled together to the High Line in NYC.
Her friend Carole walks two miles a day in Flourtown.

 He's from South Korea. I told him I liked his hair. Anything unusual I like.
 View of the windowed room.
Wanted to get a pic of this silver coffee pourer. The coffee was strong and bitter. Almost but not quite good.

 Jane Henderson is a former president of one of the Audubon societies. She also loves operas.
Dessert was a chocolate mousse. I was the only one who didn't care for it.

The main meal was a leg of duck, tough, with a big fat delicious shalott.
This sculpture of a fish is made of utensils.

 Many of the buildings were part of a Jesuit monastery. I said to Michael, Krippalu Insitute for yoga in Lenox, MA, also used to be a Jesuit monastery. My daughter Sarah used to teach there.

Click here and you'll wanna go. 

Someone asked me what Sarah's doing now.

I recently had a true story published about the two of us.  

If I wanna know what she's doing, I go on Facebook. 

A lovely fountain at CIA.

 Sanford, our bus driver. While we were eating in high style, Sanford was making a trial run to the other two places we'd visit.

His lunch? He had the new buttermilk crispy fried chicken sandwich at McDonald's. Here's a review.

Stay tuned for Part Two.

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