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The First Year

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French Culinary

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The International Culinary Center in New York City is one of the most highly respected culinary schools in the world. This is rather remarkable if only because the program is so short in duration, 6 months for the day program, 9 months if you take it by night. But the high post-graduation job placement attests to the respect this school has attained within the industry. The focus is on traditional French cuisine and cooking methods.

She earned a seat on the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators and also sat on the board of directors for the accrediting agency for all trade schools in the US. This got her invitations to visit top trade schools in Europe, which eventually led to a tour of a top professional cooking school run by the French government. As she toured a French culinary school, Hamilton had her light bulb moment.

Upon returning home, Hamilton convinced her father that they should open a French cooking school in New York City, using the French culinary school she had toured as a model. She paid the French government for the use of their curriculum, she imported some of the French teachers as guest instructors, and she kept a strict handle on quality control.

When she founded the school, Hamilton decided to follow the fast track total immersion method of culinary education used by the French schools, stressing hands on experience, and following it up with professional experience in restaurant settings.

With the fast growth of FCI came awareness that quality instruction for hobbyists and young people were lacking within the culinary arts community. When the school expanded its quarters in 2006, it addressed the need by opening a recreational division, offering evening workshops for amateur cooks and for working professionals seeking to expand their skill set. These workshops are taught by some of the best in the industry.

Possibly the most crucial element to look out for is what you will learn on a culinary arts program, so make sure it covers the necessary traditional skills, modern haute cuisine techniques and the latest culinary trends.

They range from the fundamentals of French cuisine and kitchen craft to the sort of high-end techniques deployed by Michelin-starred chefs. While one cooking school may take a different approach from another, all French culinary institutions will cover the following in a culinary arts program.

Renowned French chef Georges-Auguste Escoffier is considered the father of French culinary arts, while award-winning modern French chefs such as Jacques Pepin and Alain Ducasse are committed to continuing the tradition by giving their names to renowned culinary schools.

Upon completing the FCI programs, graduates will be well prepared for entry-level and possibly advanced positions. Furthermore, completing an education in a major culinary hub like New York City is sure to help students with professional networking in top restaurants throughout the city. Average salaries for culinary professionals range from $68,000 for executive chefs, $56,000 for restaurant managers, and $55,000 for pastry chefs.

Cuisine is an important site of cultural identity creation. It is integrally linked to ideas of nationhood and identity. French culinary identity has developed over a long period, often influenced by social and political events.

Emerging from post-revolutionary France, a need to unify the citizens through food and a French culinary identity became clear. Ultimately France forged a powerful and enduring culinary image. It is incredibly popular and chefs and restaurateurs throughout the world actively promote French food culture.

Lynda Balslev moved to Paris to study cooking in 1991. She returned to the U.S. 17 years later with a Danish husband, two children and previous addresses in Geneva, London and Copenhagen. During that time, she worked as a freelance food writer, caterer, cooking instructor and food editor for the Danish magazine Sphere. Currently she lives in Califor

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