Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Lesson From the Chinese

One of the culinary students from Shanghai, Cheng Hui, has taught me an important lesson. Hui is on his way to a very bright career in culinary arts, but not before paying his dues. He knows the price to pay for success, respects the system, and is willing to follow it. He is ambitious but focused. Hui is dedicated to his art and wants to learn all he can. In his pursuit of excellence, and the lesson for me, is that he is patient and not only learns but masters one skill before moving on to another. That's the progressive learning that takes place in a Chinese culinary school - start with basic skills, master them, and then move on, building on those basic skills. His desire to master the culinary arts has taken him to pursue self-study, outside the classroom. He has mastered the art of oriental fruit carving by careful observation and practice. There's a lesson in that for everyone.

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