COOK Masters Series: Now Taking Applications For First Quarter

Photo of chef Michael Wray.

Remember back a few weeks ago when we first announced that COOK was going to be offering a seriously cool, seriously hardcore, seriously professional-level cooking class where 10 hand-selected students would be trained over the course of 3 months by some of the best chefs in the city?

Remember when we told you that it was going to be free?

Well, we here at Foobooz are very pleased to announce that the syllabus has been set, the instructors have been booked, the dates have been confirmed and the first-ever term of the COOK Masters Series is now scheduled to begin on January 7, 2013.

And that, of course, means that we’re going to start taking applications for those ten available student slots starting today.

Cook Masters Series

First Term, January-March, 2012

Syllabus & Class Schedule

January 7, 2013: Jon Cichon of Lacroix will teach an advanced butchery class. He will cover everything from properly breaking down chicken, pork and beef to detailed butchering techniques for fish, plus overall tips for efficiency.

January 14 2013:  Joe Cicala, chef of South Philly’s Le Virtu, is master of pasta. In Pasta 1101, he’ll break down the temperamental challenges of working with dough, providing in-depth advice on a multitude of pasta styles and disciplines.

January 22, 2013: Peter Woolsey of Bistrot La Minette will teach a class on French sauces. He’ll provide students a refresher on the “mother sauces” as well as detailed instruction on a variety of other sauces important to the cuisine and their histories.

February 4, 2013:  Pastry with Christina Diekwicz of Barclay Prime. This class will allow students to extend their experiences beyond the basic chemistry of baking. Students will learn more how to experiment with recipes and how to create their own.

February 11, 2013: Katie Cavuto Boyle does healthy cooking. Katie Cavuto-Boyle is a certified nutritionist and expert at creating healthful meals that also taste good. She will break down the makeups of various foods in scientific detail, as well as how to prepare them to maximize both their flavor and health benefits.

February 18, 2013: Fish 101 with Pierre Calmels of Bibou. Students will learn to master the art of fish from start to finish. Calmels will cover tips for picking the best fish, breaking down/fileting them, cooking each piece to exact temperatures and creating a stock with the leftovers.

March 4, 2013:  Introduction to wine pairing with Brian Freedman. Knowing how to pair wine with food is a necessity for every chef. In this class, Brian will teach students how to highlight the nuances of wine vs. food and vice versa, employing techniques both complementary and contrasting.

March 18, 2013: Mock Service with Michael Solomonov of Zahav, Percy Street Barbecue, Citron & Rose and Federal Donuts. The ability to apply information learned during culinary studies is of vital importance. For the last class of the quarter, Michael will put the students through a mock service — setting up mise en place, plating multi-course meals in a timely fashion and expediting plates so they get to customers properly will all be covered during this real-time experience.

Some More Cook Masters Series Details:

  • Most dates mentioned above are Mondays, making it easier for working cooks to get to class.
  • Most classes will run between noon and 2pm, approximately. Again, in an attempt to take into account the work schedules of line cooks.
  • That said, the 10 spaces we’re trying to fill are not being held exclusively for working cooks. If you are a rank amateur that can’t even tell which end of the knife is the pointy one but can still (somehow) convince us that you deserve one of these 10 spots, you’re in.
  • This series is being offered free by COOK. Why? Because Philly’s cooks are awesome and they deserve every chance they can get to become even better than they are today.
  • Application deadline for the first term is November 26, 2012. That means that ALL applications must be received by that date–no exceptions.
  • Depending on the number of applications received, we reserve the right to run those who pass the first hurdle through a whole second round of questioning in order that we might assemble the most qualified and passionate student body.
  • Please mail all completed applications to:

Foobooz World HQ
c/o Philadelphia magazine
1818 Market Street
36th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Attn: Jason Sheehan

2013 COOK Masters Series Application [PDF]

COOK [Official Site]