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Cooking As A Culinary Art

Aug 17, 2007
Culinary arts is the art of cooking. Cooking is a way to prepare food that will be eaten or served to other people.

The culinary arts is comprised of many categories - some of which are tools, methods, combination of spices and ingredients that adds flavour to the food. It normally needs the right measurements, proper selection and accurate combination of ingredients involved to reach desired result.

The diversity of the Culinary arts around the world mirrors many considerations such as:

- Economic
- Aesthetic
- Nutritional
- Religious
- Cultural

1. The Dawn Of Fire

The culinary arts, if not always, is associated with fire. The heat generated by fire is oftentimes required to be applied to be able to change the food's texture, flavour, nutritional contents and even its appearance. Heating is important in the culinary arts because it disinfects the food and makes it softer. The food danger zone is between 4 to 60 degrees Celsius. Within these temperatures, the bacteria found in the found or even those that were transferred to the food can grow at a very alarming rate. Under ideal conditions bacteria can double their population every twenty minutes. Although at a glance, these foods may not appear harmful, when ingested they can be. Many people have the misconception that bacteria will die when we freeze our food or refrigerate them, but this actually does not rid the food of bacteria, merely it slows down their expansion.

2. Baking

Baking is probably the most famous department in the culinary arts. In the culinary arts, baking is the art of cooking food using an oven. The food is cooked through applying dry heat evenly through the oven and onto the food. It is used in producing pastry based goodies such as pies, tarts and cakes. The dry heat in the oven causes the starch to gelatinize and results to the browning or charring of the outside of the food. Some uneducated in the culinary arts might think that the charred part or the brown part is not as tasty as it sounds, but this part is actually what gives taste and flavour to the baked good, partly sealing the moisture of the food. The browning apparent in the baked good is caused by the sugar caramelizing and the chemical reaction that happens between the reduction of sugar and the amino acid (Maillard reaction). Moisture in the baked goody, on the other hand, is not really completely kept in, in time as the goody is being baked it will become drier and drier.

3. Boiling

Another category is boiling. Boiling is when there is a rapid vaporization of any liquid when the liquid is heated. In cooking, boiling is divided into many other categories. Blanching, a cooking term used to describe the submersion of food into boiling water and removing it after a certain period of time and then throwing it into cold water or letting water run over it causing the firming of food. Pressure cooking is when food is cooked inside an enclosed cooking tool that would limit the air that's coming in or going out of that tool - this technique speeds up the pace of cooking. Stewing would probably be the most popular cooking technique in the culinary arts division. It is a method where meats are cut up into smaller pieces and along with some vegetables are simmered into a liquid. Simmering, then again is a cooking method where the liquid is barely kept away from its boiling point. Other boiling techniques are braising, codding, steaming, infusion, poaching, double steaming, steeping and vacuum flask cooking.

4. Other

To most Americans, microwaving and grilling are the most common forms of cooking. Microwaving is the easiest and simplest form of cooking; it is a technique used mostly to reheat sumptuous meals ready to be consumed. And for grilling, most Americans have a grill station in their backyard. Grilling is a roasting method that is cooking directly under a source of heat. Other roasting methods are Barbecuing, Searing and Rotisserie. A less common method is smoking meat, or even salting it.
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