I admire chefs who have the time to donate to the U.S. Navy's guest chef program. In addition to loaning a seasoned culinary teacher to the ship for the day or a short cruise, it gives the ship's culinary specialists the opportunity to learn new techniques and dishes under and experienced culinarian from civilian life.
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (AW/NAC) Eric J. Rowley, USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) Public Affairs
NEW YORK (NNS) -- Chef Robert Irvine from Food Networks "Dinner Impossible" visited USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) May 27 to cook for the crew as a part of Fleet Week New York 2010.
Not only did Irvine cook breakfast, but he continued throughout the day all the way through dinner.
"Today we are pushing to a higher standard," said Irvine. "We have more people and more equipment than a restaurant, and we are using all of the same stuff in the original menu, I am just putting my own spin on it"
He also spent time with Sailors to give them kitchen tips, such as better ways to use a knife to what ingredients to use in various situations.
"I'm glad I came to work today," said Machinist's Mate Firemen Lina Rojas, food service attendant. "It was a good experience cooking with Chef Irvine."
For dinner, Irvine cooked a beef roast, roasted chicken with a creative apple juice oil vinegar and pepper sauce, Salisbury steak with a mushroom sauce and pasta with cream sauce.
"The dinner was amazing," said Fire Control Technician 2nd Class Jacob Beebe. "My wife and I are big fans of Chef Irvine's show, and he is just like he is in real life as he is on the show."
Iwo Jima's Senior Chief Culinary Specialist (SW/AW/SS) Stephen Boos has cooked with Irvine in the past when they both worked in the Naval Mess in the West Wing of the White House.
"Chef Irvine has done training for the Navy in the past, said Boos. "He is really big on on-the-job training. I hope having Chef Irvine on board here brings more of the passion of cooking to the Iwo Jima's culinary specialists."
Irvine served in the British Royal Navy where he began his cooking trade and ever since, he says, he has had an affinity for naval services.
"I have a long standing tradition with the U.S. Navy, and this is a way I can just give back," said Irvine. "I support the men and women of the Armed Services and I have always believed food improves morale."
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