Master Chef Causes a Sweet Stir at Westside HS

An accomplished master chef who once worked at New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel led about 80 culinary arts students in a series of “sweet” exercises on Sept. 27, when he came to Westside High School as part of the Culinary Institute of America’s Ambassadors program.

Arnym Solomon, now president and CEO of his own hospitality-based company, gave demonstrations of several creative ways to use sugar in cooking, including recipes such as candied bacon with truffled egg custard and red-eye gravy, and a Caribbean stew.

[photoshelter-gallery g_id=’G0000Q.IJ5LFvmIM’ g_name=’Westside-HS-CIA-Visit’ width=’600′ f_fullscreen=’t’ bgtrans=’t’ pho_credit=’iptc’ twoup=’f’ f_bbar=’t’ f_bbarbig=’f’ fsvis=’f’ f_show_caption=’t’ crop=’f’ f_enable_embed_btn=’t’ f_htmllinks=’t’ f_l=’t’ f_send_to_friend_btn=’f’ f_show_slidenum=’t’ f_topbar=’f’ f_show_watermark=’t’ img_title=’casc’ linkdest=’c’ trans=’xfade’ target=’_self’ tbs=’5000′ f_link=’t’ f_smooth=’f’ f_mtrx=’t’ f_ap=’t’ f_up=’f’ height=’400′ btype=’old’ bcolor=’#CCCCCC’ ]

“The focus this year was on the utilization of sugar when making brown sauces for stews and braised dishes and when creating caramels or candied items, as in the bacon dish,” said Chef Reginald Martin, who teaches culinary arts classes at Westside. “They also got to work with chefs for two hours the day before the presentation to prepare — or as the French would say, mise en place — their ingredients.

The culinary expert’s visit was all part of HISD’s mission to provide students with the technical skills they’ll need to succeed in their chosen professions after graduation. Chef Martin began coordinating the master chefs’ visits two years ago. The first one took place last fall.

Westside is also getting students ready for careers in the health sciences industry, through its Futures Academy.