What Are the Culinary Arts?


Quick Answer

Culinary arts describes the professional and artistic preparation of food, usually in the form of meals. Food presentation is essential for any notable culinary artist.

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Full Answer

Professional cooks, such as culinarians and chefs, are known as culinary artists. Their medium

is food, and their canvas is a plate. Culinary artists often specialize in one area, preparing regional cuisines such as Mexican, Chinese or Italian, or preparing specific types of food, such as baked goods or confectionaries.

The duties and responsibilities of a culinary artist depend on location. Restaurant chefs are usually expected to cook both traditional and original recipes. Other culinary artists choose to oversee the day-to-day operation of restaurants.

Success in culinary arts depends on a passion for food and cooking, time spent in the kitchen training and practicing, and the ability to closely follow directions. Cooking skills can be learned informally; however, most individuals interested in culinary arts careers refine their skills in a culinary institute. Here, along with cooking classes, a culinary arts student learns nutrition, alternative ingredients, meal planning, recipe writing and sanitation.

Most culinary arts graduates start their careers in establishments that serve food, such as restaurants, hotels, taverns, pastry shops and catering companies. However, some culinary artists start their own businesses. For example, most private catering companies are owned and operated by culinary arts graduates.

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