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Culinary Arts Program

Aug 5, 2013From Small Town to Culinary Meccaby oci-admin1

Watch OCI Advanced Baking and Pastry Instructor Salvatore Hall talk about his culinary career and his passion for teaching at OCI.

Jun 3, 2013The Original OCI Kitchen Ninjaby oci-admin1

As someone looking for a culinary school to provide more than just basic food knowledge, I was delighted to hear (from my Admissions officer during my OCI school tour) that OCI had a Chef Instructor from Nepal that specialized in spices, and more importantly to me, came from a lineage of medicinal healers.  I also come from an ancestry of healers.  My great grandmother’s knowledge of the human body and her understanding of natural remedies for pain and illness were, I thought, insurmountable. I couldn’t believe that a culinary school would devote any portion of their curriculum to the medicinal properties of food.  It was game changing for me. Chef Vaidya 1

Chef Bikrim Vaidya is an OCI favorite, and if you’ve been a part of the school in any way, sort of a mascot. During my schooling at OCI, Chef motivated me to understand, appreciate and study the products I was using in my dishes.  His never ending quest for knowledge and his enthusiasm for passing that knowledge to his students is what makes him truly one of a kind.  I continue to see the influence he has on his students, current and graduated.  He is definitely someone that has inspired me throughout my culinary journey. I found it only appropriate to interview Chef Vaidya for my very first blog post. More

Mar 13, 2012Chef Bikram Vaidya’s Lamb Curry Demoby oregonculinaryinstitute

Lamb Curry Recipe

(Makes 2 to 3 servings)

Ingredients:

1 pound Lamb shoulder, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes

4 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil

1 medium red onion, diced small

2 red dried chilies, whole

1 bay leaf

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

TT salt

1/2 cup tomatoes, chopped

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon cilantro

For curry paste:

1 cinnamon stick

3 cardamon pods, remove seeds from husk and discard husk.

1 1/2 teaspoon cumin, ground

1 teaspoon coriander, ground

1 teaspoon garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon ginger, chopped

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Preparation:

Step 1: Curry paste: Put cinnamon stick in mortar and pestle, or use a very clean coffee grinder, pound until finely ground. Add ground cumin, coriander and nutmeg, grind it all together. Then add garlic, ginger, 1 teaspoon of water and a pinch of salt; grind it until it becomes a paste.

Step 2: Making curry: Heat a wok or large saucepan over high heat until hot, reduce heat to medium then add oil. Add red chilies, fry for 2 seconds, add bay leaf and immediately add lamb meat; sear until lightly brown all sides. Remove from heat and transfer meat into a bowl. Leave remaining oil and fat in the saucepan.

Step 3: Over medium heat, fry onions in remaining oil until golden brown. Add spice paste, fry until you get a nice spice aroma, approx. 1 minute, then add lamb meat, turmeric and salt to taste, mix it well. Toss in the tomato and fry for 2 minutes, then add 1/2 cup water and bring mixture to a boil. Cover pot, reduce heat to low, and cook until meat is tender, approximately 20 min. Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with basmati rice.

“Spices should be used to enhance the flavor of food, not to overpower it. Spices are medicine, use them wisely.”- Chef Bikram Vaidya

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