National Culinary Arts Month is celebrated every year in July to pay tribute to professional cooks and chefs across the U.S. This is because it is not an easy job to create delicious new dishes. Neither is it an easy task to present these dishes in creative ways. One mistake and you will have to start all over again! There are thousands of chefs in America that have been trained to cater to different palates. This National Culinary Arts Month, join culinary schools, restaurants, and kitchens as they honor some of the most talented chefs in the country.
History of National Culinary Arts Month
Before we delve into the history of culinary arts, let’s take a look at what it really is. Culinary arts is basically the art of preparing and presenting food. Trust us, a dish can look 10 times more appetizing if it is presented nicely. This is why the study and profession of culinary arts have managed to gain much respect across the globe. And yes, this is why certain chefs are paid exorbitant salaries.
While the practice of cooking food has existed since the Stone Age, the techniques of cooking evolved with the introduction of earthenware, the availability of different vegetables and herbs, and the domestication of livestock. This is the time when people started experimenting with recipes and different styles of cooking. During the 4th century B.C., the Greek Archestratus wrote the first cookbook poem. Around the world, different societies adopted different styles and theories of cooking. For instance, the Chinese highlighted the five basic taste sensations: sweet, sour, briny, spicy, and bitter.
By the 3rd century B.C., a typical Greek kitchen had numerous cooking utensils that were used to fry and boil different meats and vegetables. By the 18th century, cooking methods had evolved across the world and numerous cooks began sharing their recipes. The first recognized cookbook titled “The Fannie Farmer Cookbook” was published in 1896. Written by Fannie Farmer, the historic book is still available in print today. The obsession with different recipes went a little further in 1946 when NBC aired the first nationally televised cooking show with James Beard. Since radio was more popular during that time, numerous cooking shows were also aired on radio channels.
National Culinary Arts Month timeline
Marie-Antoine Carême’s bakery is a hit in Paris.
The Boston Cooking School opens — it is the first school in the U.S. dedicated to cooking.
Auguste Escoffier, ‘the King of Chefs,’ establishes rules for culinary arts and food presentation.
The American Culinary Federation is created.
National Culinary Arts Month FAQs
How long is culinary school?
Based on the type of program you take, culinary school can take one to four years.
Is culinary arts a good career?
Culinary arts as a career can pay well and make you famous. It all depends on your cooking skills and the employment opportunities you come across.
Can you be a self-taught chef?
Yes. Some people have a knack for cooking and can experiment with ease. However, learning how to cook can introduce you to a variety of cooking methods.
How to Celebrate National Culinary Arts Month
Buy a cookbook
To celebrate this month, simply head out to a book store and buy a cookbook. The type of cuisine you want to focus on is your choice. Too lazy to go out? Download a recipe off the internet and start cooking!
Take a cooking class
The best way to master the culinary arts is to learn from a professional. So celebrate the day by booking a slot for a physical or virtual cooking class.
Create something of your own
Feeling experimental? Pay tribute to the chefs across the globe by concocting a recipe of your own. Don’t forget to take pictures!
5 Fun Facts About Culinary Arts
There are more males than females
There are more male culinary professionals than female ones.
The new way of dining
Fine dining was created in France.
The world’s most renowned cooking school
Le Cordon Bleu is a famous cooking school in Paris.
The oldest restaurant in the U.S.
The Union Oyster House opened in Boston in 1826 and is the oldest restaurant in the U.S.
The word ‘culinary’ was derived from the Latin word ‘culina’ for ‘kitchen.’
Why National Culinary Arts Month is Important
It honors chefs across the world
Chefs serve us food we wouldn’t easily have been able to make ourselves. This is why it is essential to highlight the role they play in keeping the culinary world exciting!
It reintroduces the profession to the world
We do not appreciate chefs as much as they deserve to be. During July, wrongful preconceived notions regarding chefs are eliminated and their achievements and talent are reintroduced to the world.
It motivates people to invent dishes
To honor the day, people start cooking up their own dishes! This means many yummy new recipes are introduced during this month.
National Culinary Arts Month dates