Stories of Le Cordon Bleu Graduates
vol.3 “I will always treasure the recipes I studied and the notes I took so eagerly, from my time at Le Cordon Bleu”
Minotake SeikaMade with natural ingredients and baked with care, Minotake Seika’s series of sweets is a popular attraction at numerous events and marchés across Japan. The brand name “Minotake” comes from a Japanese phrase meaning “a humble lifestyle within one’s means”— representing the brand’s motto to take small but solid steps for progress. Two books under the brand are among best selling recipe books in Japan, and have been translated into various languages including Taiwanese, Korean and French.
Aiko Kawamura, Confectionery Chef and Producer of “Minotake Seika”
Received Grand Diplôme from Le Cordon Bleu Tokyo in 2002
Without a physical storefront, Aiko Kawamura made it as one of the most popular confectionery chefs in Japan, with her iconic series of icebox (or “slice-and-bake”) cookies in the shapes your favorite animals, like cats, dogs and owls. Her two cookie recipe books have become best sellers in Japan, and today, she is invited to numerous events across the country all year round where she shares her confectionery creations with her fans.
Originally a magazine editor, Ms. Kawamura initially joined Le Cordon Bleu Tokyo hoping that she would someday work on food-related magazine features. “The classes were so tough—I’m sure I was a headache for the teachers,” she laughs. Despite her struggles, she enjoyed her classes so much that she continued on to enroll in Le Cordon Bleu’s cuisine course after she received her pastry diploma. Before she knew it, she was enchanted by the joy of creating dishes and pastries.
Unlike books and magazines that last for decades, food disappears once it is consumed. “But it sticks to our memories, and I’m mesmerized by that,” she says. Creating something memorable to customers is at the core of her culinary style today.
When Ms. Kawamura cooks, she is always reminded of the words of chefs at Le Cordon Bleu: “Think about the person you’re cooking for.”
“My instructors always believed in me and told me that I could get there,” she says. When she hits a roadblock while developing new recipes, these words from Le Cordon Bleu chefs still give her the power and motivation to push through.
Column : "Did you know?"-- Le Cordon Bleu global culinary institution with 35 schools across 20 countries
Desired qualities for a chef and a restaurant owner vary greatly. For students with cuisine and/or pastry/bakery
diplomas, Le Cordon Bleu offers a Diploma in Culinary Management
which has been designed to provide aspiring managers and business owners with the skills to to lead successful kitchens in an increasingly competitive food industry.
The 3 month-long course offers 200 hours of demonstration and practical classes where our experienced chefs share their valuable insights on recipe and menu development based on the latest food business trends. Essential management skills, including advertising, branding, promotion, use of social networking services for marketing, food safety and hygiene control are also covered in the course. Upon completion, students have the option to work inside a professional kitchen as interns.
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