In honor of Women’s History Month, I’d like to recognize a lady chef who has revolutionized the food industry and serves as inspiration to the future chefs of the Americas, Ingrid Hoffmann. Ingrid was born in Barranquilla, Colombia in 1965 and moved to Miami, FL in 1985. After several jobs in the fashion and soap opera industries, Ingrid pursued her passion for cooking.
Ingrid Hoffmann’s mother is a classically trained chef, and her mother had her in the kitchen from a very young age. She, along with her mother, opened a restaurant called Rocca where the food is cooked by lava rocks on the guests’ tabletop. Currently, Ingrid Hoffmann appears on several television shows, including her Food Network show named Simply Delicioso and Delicioso on Univision. Ms. Hoffmann is a great role model for aspiring women chefs, and her presence shows that women can be successful in the food industry.
After reading Ingrid’s story, I thought about how my love for cooking and baking started as a child. Every Thanksgiving I would be in the kitchen with my mother and grandmother while the other kids were playing. I also thought about how my little brother and I would make and decorate sugar cookies from scratch every year during the Christmas holiday. These little traditions started my passion for baking, and I’m glad I had the chance to experience it all.
Now, I challenge you to develop the next generation of chefs and pastry chefs. I’ve included two links to Ingrid Hoffmann’s recipes for Limon Chicken and Double Feature Cupcakes with Hot Chocolate Frosting. Give students these recipes and ask them to try the recipes at home (with a parent’s supervision.) This may not be interesting to a student who knows exactly what they want to be when they “grow up.” But for students who don’t really know, this may be a venture they would like to pursue. The point is, to let students try and decide.
I chose the Limon Chicken because there are two ingredients that are staples in most dishes, onion and garlic. These two ingredients will help an aspiring chef get a feel for a knife by chopping the ingredients, and also get a sense of the smell that wafts through the kitchen on a daily basis. I chose the Double Feature Cupcakes with Hot Chocolate Frosting recipe because the method for the cupcake recipe is the creaming method which is the basis for most cake and frosting recipes. This recipe will familiarize students with a mixer (either hand or stand mixer) and also the results of under and over mixing.
Good luck, and go out there and create the next generation of chefs.