Cooking Seafood in a Microwave

Cooking times in the microwave is calculated mainly on the weight of the seafood and the wattage of the oven. In a 700 watt oven allow 3 to 5 minutes at HIGH per 500 g (1lb) of seafood. To avoid overcooking, cook for the minimum time specified and allow seafood to stand (cooking continues during standing time). Check to see if fully cooked at the end of standing time. Standing time is about one-quarter to one-third of the cooking time. If necessary, cook for additional time.

If possible, use a round or oval dish and arrange seafood in a single layer around outside of dish with the thickest parts of the seafood to the outside. Whatever shape dish is used, arrange seafood in a circular pattern.

A primer on handling Mussels

When purchasing mussels make sure the shells are closed. Some open shells will close when gently tapped. If shells do not close discard those mussels. Mussels should have a slight, fresh seafood odour. Remember, mussels are alive when purchased and should be handled carefully. Ensure that mussels always have access to an adequate supply of oxygen.

Mussels are alive when purchased and should be alive when cooked. When storing mussels, ensure that there are holes in the containers or bags to allow oxygen to flow through to the mussels. Keep mussels in a refrigerator or cool environment until ready to use. Mussels may keep for 2-3 days prior to cooking. Cooked mussels, in strained liquor and put in a covered container, may last for approximately 2 days. Frozen, cooked mussels may last up to 4 months if properly sealed. (Do not freeze live mussels).

Cheese Basics

There are hundreds if not thousands of different types of cheeses. 

This is very basic table with the Name, National Origin,  Consistency and Texture,  Color and Shape,  Flavor,   Basic Ingredient, Ripening Period and common Mode of Serving  for primarily Cow milk cheeses.

The Brigade de Cuisine

Late in the 19th century, in London's Savoy Hotel, Escoffier developed the modern brigade system from the structure Kitchen Brigadehe learned while serving in the French Army, . He organized the kitchen into a hierarchy of authority, responsibility, and function.

Like an army there is a strict structure with a chain of command - Executive Chef or Chef de Cuisine, Sous Chefs and then chef's de partie's responsible for different departments, and then demi chefs, cooks and comiss below them. This structure is seen in large establishments and variations of it, with more levels of delegation in large multi unit properties and much simpler structures in small fine dining restaurants.

Below is an exhaustive list of the different members of the kitchen brigade system. Only the largest of establishments would have an extensive staff of this size. As noted under certain titles, certain positions are combined into other positions when such a large staff is unnecessary.