I’ve been surfing the internet lately, just to see what’s out there. Being a vegan chef at home, I’m looking up vegetarian sites to see what the offerings are.
I stumbled across the Vegetarian Society’s Professional Chef’s courses: Level One, Level Two, and Level Three. Each costs a whopping 499 lbs, and is located outside of Manchester, England, at the Cordon Vert School.
In order for me to become certified at this level I’d have to knock out something like 1,000 or 2,000 1bs with travel expenses, passport and the like included. Of course my inner chef says “Take the courses, go to England, have Fun!” And my partner would say, “We’ll get the money from Where?”
What they state on the course description is true. Vegan/vegetarian palates have expanded, and if Chefs don’t catch up to the times we’re going to be left behind. I had a dining experience recently at a Hotel where we were having a planning meeting. The “vegan” course involved poorly grilled veggies, steamed white rice (I suspect it was the standard par-boiled), with the main seasoning being salt. The chef at this hotel had more than a month to plan for two vegan meals. And yet, during the Hors D’oeuvres hour, I was approached and asked about what we could and could not eat. Based on that information, they rushed out a poorly designed and flavored entree. How can a chef in today’s world not know what a VEGAN does and does not eat.
I can’t expect every outlet I eat at to have quality vegetarian or vegan chefs. I would hope that chefs coming out of culinary schools these days will have some working knowledge of what to feed those of us who do not eat meat or dairy.
And for goodness sake, if you are a hotel kitchen, I know you’ve got fresh herbs hanging around somewhere, use them, instead of all that salt.