Mise en place!!!

18 Nov

Mise en place

      As some of you may have seen on the jennycakes facebook page, I am knee deep in making Whiskey Pecans right now.  It is a recipe I picked up from a chef I learned under in Georgia during my internship, and I think I will always have it memorized and take it with me where ever I go!  As an intern, you are given much grunt work. So during my time at Sea Island Resort I scooped thousands of cookies, mixed hundreds of batches of cheese biscuits and made tray after tray of these whiskey pecans…. I guess Southerners have to find something to do with all those pecans down there!!

So, as I am preparing myself this afternoon to make a few batches of these incredibly addicting pecans, I began to think about what I will need.  Ingredients, equipment, temperature on the oven…etc.  And as this list was forming, a phrase from culinary school came back to me: mise en place.  Little did I know until looking up the “official” definition, the culinary school I attended actually “coined” the phrase in the culinary world…

I decide what ingredients to put together based on when and how they are incorporated into the recipe. If you look closely, you can see brown sugar, salt and cinnamon all in the same bowl together.

Mise en place (pronounced [miz ɑ̃ plas], literally “putting in place”) is a French phrase defined by the Culinary Institute of America as “everything in place”, as in set up. It is used in professional kitchens to refer to organizing and arranging the ingredients. (Wikipedia)

We all know the situation:  you think, “Let’s make cookies!!”  You find a recipe and just start throwing things in the mixer…. If you are like me, you haven’t even read through the recipe because you think, “of course I have everything”, as you briefly scan the pantry.  But then you come to that one ingredient… baking powder…. eggs…. chocolate chips…. and you either don’t have enough or any at all!



**** I have the solution to the above situation!!  Mise en place!!! ****

my next two batches of whiskey pecans and ready and waiting!

If you have wondered why in the world you may need a million different sized bowls and ramekins…. now is the time to have an epiphany.   Measure everything in advance!  There are two main advantages of this: 1. You will know if you have everything you will need. 2. It makes whipping up those cookies so quick and easy!!

So friends, I highly recommend you heed the mise en place rule.  Measure things out first. Be an organized baker!  It will prevent that great idea of making cookies from turning into a very frustrating experience!!


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