Fine Dining & the Essentials that Make it Run

Fine dining is not something that you have to go to an expensive restaurant to experience. With a little effort and the right ingredients, you can prepare your own amazing meals. While it helps to acquire some great recipes and some basic cooking skills, having the best ingredients and the proper equipment goes a long way towards providing you with gourmet meals that everyone will relish.

Where Will You Be Preparing the Meal?

The place you will be preparing the meal must be considered before you make any preparations. Cooking at home is the simplest option, as everything you need will be right at hand. In some cases, however, you may want to prepare your meal at another location. A barbecue, for example, is always fun during summer holiday weekends. Beach dining from such places like Rudee’s Restaurant & Cabana Bar is another location of where you can enjoy your meal and the view. Still another possibility is preparing a meal at a public venue where you’re hosting an event. In that case, you should scout out the facilities and find out what is available and what you’ll need to bring.

Equipment You Will Need

The specific equipment you will need depends on the style of cooking you will be doing. There are, however, certain fundamentals that everyone should have on hand.

  • Cutlery -Including quality chef knives and knife sharpening equipment.
  • Tools and Small Devices – Wooden spoons for stirring, whisks, spatula, vegetable peeler, cutting boards, measuring cups, measuring spoons, potato masher, skimmer, tongs, kitchen shears, garlic press, grater, oven mitts, salt & pepper mill.
  • Appliances -Convection oven, blender, crock pot, mixer, food processor.

You won’t necessarily need every one of these things. In some cases, you may need items not listed above. This, however, is a good place to start. If you can find a store or business, such as Albuquerque Restaurant Equipment, near you that sells restaurant equipment, you can begin to stock up on what you need. You may also be able to find good deals on equipment you need online.

Ingredients for Gourmet Cooking

Cooking is so diverse that it’s difficult to generalize about what ingredients you need. However, no matter what style of cooking you prefer, you should always keep in mind that if you want to create dishes that are memorable, you must start with the finest ingredients. This include:

  • Starters -Don’t neglect starters such as soups, salads and appetizers. These set the stage for any great meal. Start off with good quality lettuce and tasty homemade dressings for salads, soup stock and some great appetizers.
  • Meat and Fish -Starting with the best cut of meat or the freshest fish is essential to create great dishes.
  • Fruits and Vegetables -Look for items that are fresh but not overripe. Organic is usually best. Don’t be afraid to experiment and broaden your horizons; using more exotic fruits and veggies create more interesting meals.
  • Spices -Any meal can be improved by the right spices and flavorings. Don’t overdo it, though. Aim for a good blend of spices. If you are cooking something hot and spicy, you can try things like homemade salsa, hot peppers and gourmet chili spices, that you can always get from The Chile Guy.
  • Desserts -It’s always pleasant to end a fine meal with something sweet. This is another area where you have a great deal of leeway to experiment.
  • Beverages -Includes fine wines, non-alcoholic beverages such as fruit juices and tea, coffee or espresso for after the meal.

Fine dining is an art that can improve the quality of your life. Eating well, like at Café Jean Pierre, is a pleasure that can now be enjoyed by almost anyone who is willing to exercise their creativity, learn some basic skills and acquire the right ingredients and equipment.

Cuisine Variations in Restaurants Today

There was a time when dining out was limited to a very few choices – at the economical end of the scale were a half dozen national or regional fast food chains – above that, ‘sit down’ establishments offered variations of steak, seafood, Italian, Chinese or Mexican.

That’s all changed, as we have become a country of foodies, interested in trying cuisines from different parts of the world, or paying attention to specific kind of dietary regimens, like vegetarian, gluten free, and other options.

Today, dining out has become an exciting adventure, and we have a choice of myriad styles of dining, different types of cuisine, styles of cooking, or combinations of these segments.

Whether you have a taste for traditional French food, like from Café Jean Pierre, a hankering for something made with Mexican red mole paste from The Chile Guy, or just steak and potatoes, there’s an establishment serving exactly what you like, and probably at a price point you will find agreeable.

We have restaurants ranging in service from drive-through only, to fast casual, family restaurants, like Range Café, to five star, fine dining establishments and everything in between. An entire new class of entrepreneurs have introduced us to ‘mash-ups’ of different cuisines, selling their own concoctions inexpensively, and prepared fresh, served from carts or trucks parked around cities.

Additionally, multiple new operations have opened that cater to one specific type of cuisine; there are a dozen or more new restaurant chains that focus only on hamburgers. Giant buffets with Asian variations offer dozens and dozens of choices at a single serving and flat price. Brazilian steak houses serve you a dozen different types of protein on demand at your table, cooked to a char in the South American “cowboy style.”

Additionally, each region of the country has its own specialties, unique to the area, whether it’s Cajun/Creole in New Orleans, Tex-Mex in San Antonio, Salmon in the Pacific Northwest, beef in the corn belt or Virginia Beach seafood dining from Rudee’s Restaurant & Cabana Bar, one can enjoy dozens of different styles around the country or around their home town.

The introduction of all of these new cuisines and the addition of boutique and unique grocery stores bringing us new and exciting ingredients have also influenced our home cooking as well. We chop, dice, slice, whip, puree, bake, broil and fry at home like never before and we can still get a feel of a home cooked meal from Standard Diner.

It’s an entirely new world in the restaurant business, with owners constantly introducing something new to amaze the public.