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Stella Culinary's Guide To Agar Gels

Winer Citrus Terrine Using AgarAgar is a gelling agent derived from red algae that is commonly used in Asian cuisine, modern kitchens, and as a substitution for gelatin in vegan and vegetarian recipes.

In a previous lecture series, I discussed how gelatin is commonly used and some of it's common pitfalls. One of the major shortcomings of gelatin is its inability to set in acidic environments. Take for example the winter citrus terrine pictured left; when I first started developing this recipe, I used gelatin. Time and time again, the terrine wouldn't set up as I planned.

When I took the pH of the terrine mixture, I realized it was at 3.2, which is below the acidity threshold of gelatin at 4. When I switched to agar, my setting problems went away, only to be replaced by other issues such as mothfeel and weeping (agar gels tend to leak liquid). But with a little research...


Learn how to cook free culinary school online

Creating a Consomme

How To Make Consommé (Clarified Stocks & Broths)

Guide To Gelatin

Stella Culinary's Guide To Gelatin (Three Part Lecture Series)

Restaurant Style Braised Beef Short Ribs

Restaurant Style Braised Beef Short Ribs (Video Recipe)

How to make garlic mashed potatoes

How to Make Mashed Potatoes (Video Recipe)

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Culinary School Podcast Learn How To Cook

Stella Culinary School Audio Podcast Learn How To Cook Like a Professional ChefThe Stella Culinary School Podcast is our flagship audio series that started it all. Originally known as "The Free Culinary School Podcast," this ongoing series starts with the most basic skills, with each episode building on the next. Hosted by Jacob Burton, Executive Chef of The Cedar House Sport Hotel and Stella Restaurant, this podcast strives to replicate the same lectures a student would receive at top culinary schools around the world.

Learn how to cook like a professional chef through podcasts on iTunes Learn How to Cook Audio Lectures
SCS 1| Basic Knife Skills SCS 7| Braising, Poaching & Roasting SCS 13| Sauce Espagnole SCS 19| Twelve Steps of Bread
SCS 2| Stocks Part 1 SCS 8| Frying, Confit & Deep Fat Poaching SCS 14| Greens & Vinaigrettes SCS 20| Bread Classifications
SCS 3| Stocks Part 2 SCS 9| Hollandaise SCS 15| Classic Salads & Creamy Dressings SCS 21| Sourdough Starters & Preferments
SCS 4| Basic of Blanching SCS 10| Sauce Veloute SCS 16| Composed Salads  
SCS 5| Basic Starches SCS 11| Bechamel Sauce SCS 17| Canapes  
SCS 6| Sauteing, Searing & Pan Roasting SCS 12| Sauce Tomat SCS 18| Four Pillars of Bread  

Video Techniques

Culinary Knife Skills - Learn How to Cook Like
-Professional Knife Grip

-Using Your Guide Hand

-How To Dice

-Julienne an Onion

-Dice an Onion

Learn Culinary Knife Skills From a Professional Chef School


Kitchen Prep Culinary School Curriculum Online
-Blanching Leafy Greens

-Blanching Baby Carrots

-Roast Garlic

-Clarified Butter

-Roasting Beets

Kitchen Prep Culinary School Online
How to Make Sauces and Soups Professional Chef Culinary School
-Chicken Stock

-Roasted Veal Stock

-Vegetable Stock

-Fish Stock

-Beurre Blanc

How to Make Culinary Sauces Professional Chef School
Cooking Techniques Learn How to Cook Like a Professional Chef
-How to Saute


-Methods of Cooking

-Chicken Breast

-Fillet of Beef

Professional Cooking Techniques Taught In Culinary School
Completed Dish Video Series Learn How To Cook
-Pan Roasted Halibut

-Butter Lettuce Salad

-Ahi Sashimi

-Steak Tartare

-Tomato Capresse

How to Bake Bread Culinary School Professional Chef
-Baker's Percentage

-Basic Baguette

-Sourdough Starter

-Sourdough Loaf

-European Brown Bread

How to Bake Bread Like a Professional
Charcuterie Learn How To Cook
-Duck Confit

-Trotter Terrine

-Salmon Rilette

-Duck Pate

-Curing Salt Q&A

How to Make Charcuterie and Cured Meats
Food Science Learn How to Cook
-What's An Emulsion

-Emulsifiers & Stabilizers

-Emulsification Process

-What's a Brine

-The Brining Process

Food Science Learn How to Cook

New to Stella Culinary? Want to learn to cook like a chef?

Hey there! Are you new to Stella Culinary? Then I'd like to introduce myself and tell you a little bit about Stella Culinary, a website dedicated to teaching anyone who wants to learn, how to cook like a professional chef. My name is Jacob Burton, and I'll be your chef instructor.

Stella Culinary is a website dedicated to teaching passionate cooks the same professional level cooking techniques, theories and philosophies you would learn in a traditional culinary school. Whether you're a beginner just starting out, and need lessons on how to hold a chef's knife, make stock or blanch vegetables, or a seasoned pro looking to up your knowledge in food science, basic & advanced level Charcuterie, or pick up a few tricks on sourdough bread baking, we've got you covered. And unlike a traditional culinary school where students spend a finite time, Stella Culinary is continually adding new content for both basic and advanced level cooks, so your knowledge can grow as we do.

If you're ready to learn how to cook like a professional chef, or a professional just wanting to take your game to the next level, follow these five easy steps:

  1. Sign-up for the Stella Culinary e-mail newsletter to stay up to date when new educational content is released, receive subscriber only bonuses, and get notified about our advanced level and in person cooking courses. And look, I hate spam just as much as the next guy (unless it's fried and served over steamed rice), but lucky for you, I'm a professional chef who loves to teach people how to cook, not a Russian spam bot trying to sell you pharmaceuticals. The best part is, if you're ever like "wow, Jacob, this content is just too awesome, I can't take it any more," then simply hit the unsubscribe button I provide at the bottom of every e-mail and my feelings won't even get hurt...some people just can't handle the awesomeness that is Stella Culinary.

  2. Create a free Stella Culinary username and password so you can post comments, ask questions, and share your own knowledge on our friendly community forum. One of the reasons I do Stella Culinary, is because I truly believe to master something, you have to teach it. If you get stuck with a concept, have a disastrous dish, or just want to know the how's and why's behind cooking, then ask it on our forum and one or more of our friendly community members will help you out. And then maybe one day, you can solidify what you've learned and return the favor by answering someone else's culinary question with the knowledge you've obtained. I like to call it the "circle of educational reciprocity;" I teach you, you teach me, and before you know it, we're culinary super geniuses that together rule the world (or can at least throw a killer dinner party as a consolation prize). If you want more information on how to register a username, customize your account, post images to the forum, etc, then check out this informational page.

  3. Listen to the Stella Culinary School audio podcasts starting at episode one.

  4. Watch the videos found in our How To Cook Video Index, focusing on the Knife Skills, Kitchen Prep and Cooking Technique categories, especially if you've never had any professional level training.

  5. Tell your family and friends about all the super awesome educational content and friendly people you've found on Stella Culinary. The more passionate, dedicated cooks, the better.

That's about it. Follow those five easy steps above, and even if your greatest culinary achievement to date has been cutting the crust off a PB&J with maximum yield, we'll have you cooking like a pro in no time.