FLCC culinary students offer 'Julia' cookbook

Staff reports
The Chronicle-Express

HOPEWELL -- Unable to offer the Dinner at Julia restaurant nights that have become a hallmark of the fall semester, Finger Lakes Community College culinary arts faculty and students found a way to share their most popular recipes with the public.

They've compiled a 98-page cookbook titled "Julia Presents: Dinner for Four" that includes instructions for dozens of entrees, appetizers and desserts interspersed with quotes from famous chefs and students in the class.

Copies are now available for $20 and can be ordered online at https://give.flcc.edu/juliacookbook, or by calling 585-785-1205. Proceeds will benefit the FLCC Food Cupboard.

Francisco Olivera Hernandez, of Newark, prepares Cajun crab and quinoa cakes, featured on page 25 of the cookbook, "Julia Presents: Dinner for Four."

"The book contains many of the recipes that we have done over the years in our student restaurant class, scaled to work at home," said Jamie Rotter, assistant professor and coordinator of the culinary arts program.

Rotter and faculty colleague Patrick Rae came up with the idea to provide experiential learning following the decision to cancel Dinner and Julia, a series of Friday night gourmet dinners normally open to the public. Instead, culinary students came together in small groups for cooking instruction at the nearby New York Kitchen in Canandaigua. Rotter, Rae and hospitality instructor Paula Knight had them prepare Julia dishes while scaling them down to family-size servings for inclusion in the cookbook. The cookbook became part of the curriculum.

Students chose which recipes to include in the book. Quotes from the students appear under the recipes. For instance, the recipe for corn and bacon chowder includes a quote from student Connor Bateman of Hilton: "Corn is very popular over the summer. I figured it would be a good recipe for people to do on their own."

FLCC graphic design Prof. Liz Brownell and student Allissa Merritt provided the formatting. Rotter's wife, Kelly, served as a volunteer editor.

"We couldn't have made this happen without the support from our FLCC colleagues and friends at the New York Kitchen, who not only provided us space but helped gather ingredients and other items, sometimes at a moment's notice," said Rotter. "Above all, though, we have our students to thank. They came together in a semester that was anything but normal and created something that's pretty great."

In addition to Bateman, students in the restaurant course include: Shaylyn Wiest of Hilton; Mark Butler, Katie Hungerford, Casey Lead and Kayleigh Rotter of Canandaigua; Christopher Cole of Clifton Springs; Jason Cruz of Geneva; Caitlin Goodwin of Naples; Michael Nicoletti and Alessia Paratore of Webster; and Francisco Olivera Hernandez of Newark.

For more information on the FLCC culinary arts and hospitality degree programs, visit flcc.edu or call 585-785-1000. Information about financial aid and all other enrollment steps is available at www.flcc.edu/onestop.