As Assistant Professor in the School of Culinary Arts at Chicago’s Kendall College, Chef Wook Kang is in a unique position. As a chef of 16 years, he has extensive experience with equipment. But as an instructor, he gets to see how tomorrow’s chefs interact with equipment.
Q. What changes are you seeing in how students interact with equipment?
Wook Kang: I see more students use equipment that I have not. But I’ve also noticed that some students don’t know how to use the more advanced equipment.
They haven’t cooked enough professionally to know how to work with more advanced equipment. Some of them don’t even know how to use a food mill.
Q. What about electronic controls on equipment? Do today’s students adapt more readily than you did?
WK: Not necessarily. When they use a combi oven, for example, they don’t know how to use the settings and they need to fidget around a couple of times to really get the full feel of it.
Q. If there were something you could tell an equipment manufacturer, what would it be?
WK: Pictorials would be of great assistance. I also think having directions written more simply would help — where it’s literally step 1, 2, 3.
When it’s simplified that way, it’s more user-friendly than having a big training session. People often lose focus or don’t take notes the right way. By the time they’re ready to use it, they don’t know how to use it to its full extent. When there are more pictures and easy-to-follow directions for specific tasks, it makes everybody’s life easier.
Check out the following stories for tips from today’s chefs for utilizing your equipment to its maximum advantage.
Hobart - The Advantages of Equipment From One Source
Irinox - The Advantages of Blast Chilling
Marra Forni - Cook Faster and More Efficiently With Marra Forni
Rational - A Company of Chefs, for Chefs
Rubbermaid - A Chef Talks About Food Safety
Vollrath - An Introduction To Induction