Johnson & Wales beef fabricating class

Cutting up in the kitchen {lab}

Johnson & Wales beef fabricating class

I recently went back to school … and discovered that one of the best learning tools is curiosity. I put on my “I want to know more” hat and observed a beef fabrication class at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, R.I.

Tell me and I will forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I will understand. ~ Chinese Proverb

Peter Vaillancourt - Johnson & Wales

Our instructor was Peter Vaillancourt — an amazing and effective teacher who understands and practices engaging his [mostly] eager students (the class starts at 7 a.m. after all!) in active discussion and hands-on participation. Peter sang, shouted, used colorful language — even spryly jumped up on a table and did his best imitation of a steer — to get his points across.

He taught us so much in class about using and cutting beef. My basic takeaways are these:

  • Everything comes down to dollars and cents (whether you’re talking pounds or portions)
  • Pricing is determined by supply and demand (and we all want the best value per dollar)
  • Every cut — meaning with a knife blade —has its consequences (think of the old adage: measure twice, cut once)

Bottom line, you can always teach a cowgirl new tricks that she will use in her quest to educate others. And speaking of tasty, tender, premium Angus beef … I’m hungry! Perhaps one of these recipe options will do the trick.

Happy eating from one beef lover to another!