By Michael Laiskonis—Creative Director
When I started cooking (well over twenty years ago), society was still squarely in the analog realm. With no formal training—and no Internet—I would seek out and devour whatever limited information I could find, and my sources were few and far between. I relentlessly pored over anything I could get my hands on: namely, outdated cooking school textbooks and a pile of stained, yellowed, hand-written notebooks that I found on a shelf in the kitchen at my first bakery job. Cookbooks and dog-eared magazines were like trophies, rites of passage as I earned my stripes, and the wait for each new source of inspiration seemed interminable.
With the emergence of new technologies, the evolution of cooking has enjoyed an exponential rate of innovation and creativity. One can only imagine the freedom cooks suddenly felt with the invention of gas-fired ovens or the speed with which they completed manual tasks once kitchens were wired with electricity. Most recently, the culture of food has been propelled by the advent of information technology. In an instant, the Internet provided quick access to information, and cooks in all corners of the globe no longer toiled in obscurity. The nature in which we communicate and share information continues to manifest in new forms. Chat forums, blogs and social media have, without question, changed the way we process information. And they surely have changed how we cook: how we learn about food, how we shop for it and how we document what we eat. Today, culinary creativity is no longer relegated to the ranks of professional cooks; a large segment of our culture regularly expresses itself through the lens of food.
Read on to learn how Chef Michael wields social media to collaborate with other innovative chefs.