By Frank Stanko
NDSCS Culinary Arts and Norwegian studies classes collaborate on menu
Norwegian studies at the North Dakota State College of Science is normally taught by professor Anne Taylor. Taylor introduces her students to many elements of the Scandinavian country’s culture. When it came to Norway’s cuisine, she had assistance.
Taylor’s students were taught this week by most of the first year students of culinary arts professor and chef Kyle Armitage. On Thursday, a Norwegian dinner was prepared, featuring creamed cabbage, parsley potatoes, meatballs, salmon with sour cream dill sauce, grilled lamb with currents and sour cream, gravy, sweet bread and for dessert, fattigman, a fried “poor man’s cookie” garnished with powdered sugar.
“This is our second year we’ve done a collaboration with the Culinary Arts department. It’s a win-win situation between the two departments. I love it, it’s just great, so fun. It’s my favorite week,” Taylor said. On Tuesday, her students made a full Norwegian breakfast with the rest of Armitage’s students.
The culinary arts students were excited for the opportunity to demonstrate their skills.
“We get to share our knowledge with other people and share our passion,” said culinary arts student Taisyn St. Claire, who led the fattigman cooks. “Culinary has always been a passion of mine, so being able to come to — I live in Bottineau, North Dakota, that’s five hours away — the only culinary school in the state, you get the culinary feel, while being kinda close to home, without paying a strenuous amount of money.”
And the Norwegian studies students were enthusiastic about trying something out of the ordinary.
“I would work with foreign cuisine at my house. It’s fun to try different things,” said Shania Mau, who prepared the cabbage and potatoes.
Culinary arts student John Madison agreed, saying he’d never worked with Norwegian food before, but “It went pretty smooth. I can’t be mad at that.” Madison, who is a running back for the NDSCS Wildcats, said culinary arts is something he would consider pursuing in the future.
“At first, I just took the class for the credit, but once we started actually doing stuff and learning about Norway, it was really cool,” said Norwegian studies student and fattigman cook Zachery Bellmore. Bellmore said he isn’t aware of any Norwegian in his family, but the class is doing an ancestry project, so he’ll find out.
The lamb was praised. “It’s so nice and soft in the middle, and that’s because we’re cooking it medium rare, so you still have that tiny bit of color,” said culinary arts student Charlie Jorgensen, who has experience with the meat through his job at Prante’s Fine Dining in Wahpeton. Norwegian studies student Tory Safranski agreed, calling what she was eating one of the best pieces of lamb she had ever had.
“A lot of times, the students or the community members who come in and take the class, they want to know about us, they want to know what (professional chefs) do, almost just as much as what we’re doing,” Armitage said.
“Last year was kind of our first year trying it out, and Anne and I spoke a couple of times through the summer, to make sure we wanted to do it again,” he continued. “It challenges my students a lot differently (than the usual assignment), because ultimately this was a community education cooking class. That’s how we approach it. Any of my students are going to be asked to do those, from almost day one after graduation to the end of their career, so they might as well have a good feel for what they have to do to become experts in a certain topic and to be able to answer questions, to decide what that does the community want to do and what do they not want to do. There’s a huge amount of learning on our end.”
Department: English and Humanities
Department: Culinary Arts
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