CULINARY 2 - Recipes, Information Packets and Test & Quiz Dates


    In Culinary 2, we explore the cuisines of the world and the impact of culture, politics, geography and climate on what people eat and the way they eat.  We cover 2 USA regional cuisines (usually New England and Cajun/Creole cuisines, the cuisines of Mexico and 1 or 2 South American or Caribbean cuisines, Thailand, India, China, Japan and Italy.  If time permits, we'll do a lab on Greece and one on France.  At 2 or 3 points during the semester, students will take home one of our recipes to cook at home with family.  Recipes will be attached to this page as we finish each unit. 

    People around the world eat the foods we identify with their countries or regions for a variety of reasons.  Some of those reasons may no longer exist, but the culinary traditions remain.  Nothing stays vivid in our memories or brings people together like shared food traditions.  Whether our food favorites are family or cultural traditions, they remain a powerful link to our history.  Almost all of the important holidays and events in our lives – even the insignificant ones – are linked to foods and beverages. 

    Politics, geography and climate, religion and economic status have all played significant roles in shaping the cuisine of peoples everywhere.  On a more personal day-to-day level, our food choices are often made based upon convenience, availability and health reasons in addition to family and cultural food traditions. 

    In the past, food was about survival; our bodies were hard-wired to crave the elements we needed to survive in those days of hunting, gathering and fishing.  Primitive men and women expended enormous amounts of energy and required a very large caloric intake to meet those needs.  As time progressed and we humans did things like domesticate animals and cultivate the land, our relationship with food began to change.  On the down side, our diets became less varied and our levels of physical activity began to drop.  On the up side, we began to think about the flavors in foods and more varied methods of cooking.

    The world has become a very small place, especially in the culinary realm.  More than ever, the average man, woman or child on the street consider themselves to be “foodies” and - thanks largely to the proliferation and success of food television programming – they are.  Many Americans have, in culinary terms, graduated and joined the people of Europe and Asia in terms of the appreciation and understanding of more sophisticated and varied foods.  We crave fresh, interesting and new flavors or new takes on what's old hat.

    Today, fusion seems to rule the world:  chili relleno pizza, Korean tacos, spaghetti tacos, spiced lamb and Greek style rice rolled into sushi rolls, mushroom crepes with poblano chili sauce,  foie gras with fresh spring rolls or Chinese stir-fry dosa are a few examples of fusion food dishes.  Tex-Mex and "Chindian" are two examples of fusion cuisines that have developed due to migrating populations.  In some ways, the U.S. is one big culinary fusion lab; quite literally the melting pot it is often referred to as.  Jump in and try something new! 

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