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Old 07-10-2007, 08:20 PM   #1
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On Line Cooking School

This may be a dumb question, but there are any on-line cooking schools?


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Old 07-10-2007, 08:29 PM   #2
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Cooking Cop, your question isn't a dumb one and isn't out of the realm of possibility. I just did a quick Google search of "online cooking schools" and came up with quite a number of possibilities.

However, there are plenty of professional chefs on this site who I hope will weigh in on your question. Thanks for asking it.

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Old 07-10-2007, 09:17 PM   #3
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I think this is a great idea from the teacher's standpoint, but I'm not sure about the student's point of view; what about the evaluation part? How do you get feedback without the teacher tasting the result? Pictures don't do it.
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Old 07-10-2007, 10:30 PM   #4
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Old 07-11-2007, 03:56 AM   #5
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I really can't see something like this as being beneficial unless the people taking it already have, at the very least, an intermediate understanding of classical cooking. With no chef to guide you and to help you hone your techniques, not to mention that they won't be able to taste, feel, smell, or see what you've cooked, an online class would not give the student the proper teaching in any aspect. Unlike Math, English, Psychology, etc., cooking is so, so much more than just visual. You need the chef to be there and you need to be there cooking with others, in a live environment, in a professional style kitchen for you to get the full beneft, understanding, and appreciation.

Unlike many other types of courses you can take online, in cooking there's more than just a right or wrong answer. You don't need a professor there per se to tell you what the function of X is. If the answer is 4 and you get 4, that's it. In cooking, you may have to make a beurre blanc and if you've never made it before, you'll have no idea on how to control the temperature and how the finished product should look and taste. There's so many different steps to it and equally as many things that could go wrong with it at any point during the cooking process. Unlike other subjects, cooking is a skill. Reading a work by F. Scott Fitzgerald and writing an essay about it is not. Reading a chapter of cognitive psychology, and then taking a quiz about it is not. Practicing linear equations and then taking a quiz about them is not. You can take anybody off the street, give them a handout to read about say, semantic memory, then give them a quiz and they can do it. Some may only get a few questions right and some may get many of the questions right. You take the same people and give them shallots, tarragon, white wine, vinegar, and butter and tell them to make a beurre blanc, all you'll have is saucepans full of a buttery, liquid mess.

If you're truly serious about learning how to cook or improving your culinary skill, look into courses at your local community college that has a culinary program or any local culinary schools. Anything else is a waste of time, money, and resources.
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