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Experiences

As part of the Michael Caines Academy, students are exposed to a range of trips and experiences to broaden their knowledge of the industry.

Examples of experiences

Michael Caines

Michael Caines demo

Michael Caines MBE, academy founder and one of Britain's highest profile chefs visited the academy to demo three dishes, carrot and coriander soup, scallops and truffle and beef with cleriac puree, potato, spinach and shallots.

Michael talked the academy through the dishes and the techniques involved and the academy were able to taste the completed dishes

The academy students discovered new cooking techniques, how different flavours work together, how meats are formed and the best ways to cook different cuts.

Website: www.michaelcaines.com


Southwest Chef

South West Chef competition

The South West Chef competition looks for the region's best professional chefs and amateur and junior cooks! The essence of the competition is to demonstrate skill, creativity in cooking and knowledge of produce from the South West of England.

The academy were able to help out at the competition meal, from prep to plating up of the food. This involved cooking with quality chefs for 115 covers, some of which were celebrities!

The students experienced a new style of function, gaining valuable future experience, they discovered what it is like to work under pressure on a fast production line and the importance of preparation in the kitchen to ensure a smooth service!

Website: www.southwestchef.co.uk


Golf and Country Club

Exeter Golf and Country Club

Since 1895, Exeter Golf and Country Club has been recognised as one of the finest golf and country clubs in the South West.

The academy were invited to spend the evening providing front of house service for the South West Chef of the Year competition celebration meal. Students also gained a brief tour of the venue, were given a deatled talk of the dishes and the seating plan.

The students discovered how functions work, how to deal with customers, when it is right to pour wine and to be quick on their feet!

Website: www.exetergcc.co.uk


Little Pod

Littlepod

Littlepod create high-quality, natural ingredients at an affordable price. Based in East Devon, their speciality is Madagascan vanilla paste in a tube.

Littlepod visited the academy to talk about their journey and to explain how Vanilla is grown and produced and how we should use real vanilla instead of extract.

The students discovered the history and importance of real Vanilla, they also found out how difficult and how long it takes to produce! They also left knowing a few ways to use Vanilla in dishes in the future!

Website: www.littlepod.co.uk 


Gidleigh Park

Gidleigh Park

Gidleigh Park, the quintessential country house, nestled in a wooded valley within the natural beauty of the wilds of Dartmoor, is home to academy founder, Michael Caines MBE. Gidleigh hosts one of the finest cellars in the UK, holding over 1,300 bins!

The academy were taken on a tour of the hotel and the kitchens, the wine cellar and a variety of rooms, they were then given a talk by Michael on the menu and how the kitchen is ran. Michael also hosted and Q&A session.

The students left inspired, they had discovered a lot about the business works, seeing first hand that working in such a high quality hotel is hard work, including the level of detail that goes into everything! They were also amazed at how good quality food can be produced in a small kitchen!

Website: www.gidleigh.co.uk


Sweet Cumin

Sweet Cumin

Sweet Cumin is ran by Bini Ludlow, set up to pass on her knowledge to budding cooks, young and old, who want to understand the importance of using spices, trying new flavour combinations and how to create and develop their own dishes.

Bini visited the academy to demo traditional Indian cookery, the students tasted a mixture of spices and described the taste, they then made Chipatis and cooked their own spicy chicken wings and vegitarian curry with Paneer Cheese

The students discovered how complex levles of spices are needed to not only create flavour but to make the right balance in a dish and not over power. They also discovered that home cooked Indian food is cheaper and nicer than a takeaway!

Website: www.sweetcumin.co.uk


Pipers Farm

Pipers Farm

Pipers farm are ward winning artisan butchers and farmers. Slow growing delicious, healthy meat.

The academy students visited the farm to be shown around the butchery area, they were given the opportunity to butcher a chicken and a pig. They were also shown the cold rooms and where the Animals were being hung to dry. They were also given a tour of the farm land and a talk on Animal welfare.

The students left fascinated, they discovered that Animals are not just food and they need to be looked after properly, they found out the pros and cons of butchered meat in comparison  to supermarket meatl, finally they were shocked to discover cheap bacon is full of salt and water!

Website: www.pipersfarm.com


St Austell Brewery

St Austell Brewery

St Austell Brewery is a Family brewery, ran since 1851, based at St Austell, Cornwall, producing a range of cask ales which are supplied to 150 tied houses, and to the free trade.

The academy students visited the brewery to learn about how alcohol is produced on a commercial scale. They were taken on a tour of the whole production process and talked with the Marketing manager about his role.

The students discovered what goes in to Beer, and how new Beers are developed.

Website: www.staustellbrewery.co.uk


Mike Tweedy

Mike Tweedy

Mike Tweedy is head chef at Ballyfin, a luxurious, exclusive Irish 19th centure house, previously he was a Sous Chef at Gidleigh Park.

Mike visited the academy to talk about his career and cook three dishes, Chicken mousse with Veal sald and garnish, Crab Salad, and Beef fillet with poached vegetables and puree. The three dishes showed a varitey of ingredients and techniques.

The students discovered an insight in to working in a high quality restaurant, learnt how to build up the dishes and make certain componants, and new flavour combinations to try at home. They also saw new ways in presenting food.

Twitter: www.twitter.com/tweediesm