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Maya Vincelli assistant director of retail operations the University of Richmond
<p>Maya Vincelli, assistant director of retail operations, the University of Richmond</p>

Mise en Place: Training a diverse workforce

Kitchen techniques, science, training, technology & magic

“One of the more interesting training obstacles is that of an intergenerational workforce. Foodservice is a catchall for all backgrounds, and yes, all ages. So while some younger employees pick up on touch-screen registers without blinking an eye, older employees sometimes struggle with new technology. Conversely, more experienced employees generally have a greater understanding of what makes for truly excellent customer service.

I find that having a pretty diverse working group greatly enhances the level of quality service because everyone brings something special to the table.  

Sometimes I think managers get caught up in trying to hire the very best person for the open position, when there could be some diamonds in the rough with less experience that show great potential. Taking some classes on behavioral interviewing has allowed me to step outside of the resumé and view the candidate as a whole person.”

Yes, Fish have Cheeks, and Yes, You Should be Using Them

“There is a common misconception that fish contains only one cut of meat,” writes Taylor Witkin in the “Local Pickins” blog. To throw away the fish head without extracting the cheeks means missing out on “tender morsels of flesh that are packed with more flavor than any other part of the animal,” he writes.

Of course, it won’t be worthwhile to grab the cheeks from little fish like sardines or anchovies, according to Witkin, but “if you see a nice looking monkfish, tuna, grouper or skate, get excited; the best qualities of the fish are accentuated in the cheeks. Whether you love the flakiness of grouper…the sweet, mild tones of monkfish and skate, or the rich, meaty flavor of ahi tuna, the cheek will blow you away.”

Photo: Thinkstock

Food Science
Do you serve people who have peanut allergies? Check this out: USDA researchers have been working on something that could be big news: allergen-free peanuts. The department’s Annual Report on Technology Transfer detailed new patents and discoveries including a procedure that could remove up to 98 percent of allergens from peanuts without affecting the flavor.

Flavor Magic
Broccoli, cauliflower, kale and cabbage, also known as the brassica genus of cruciferous veggies, have notoriously strong flavors. Rather than taming those flavors (with cheese or sweeter sauces), sometimes it’s better to go “bold on bold,” according to Laura B. Russell, author of “Brassicas: Cooking the World’s Healthiest Vegetables.” Try pairing broccoli with these items for maximum impact: anchovies, red pepper flakes, capers, garlic or fish sauce.
Source: The Salt

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