Chef Amado began his foray into the culinary world at the age of 16, selling churros in the streets of Guadalajara, Mexico. As a young man he made the move to the U.S. to pursue an education in culinary arts. In 1992 he graduated from Grand Rapids Community College, and not long after, traveled to Belgium where he worked to develop his knowledge of classical European pastry and chocolate.
He returned to U.S. in 1994 and worked in a variety of positions at private country clubs and fine dining restaurants throughout California, Indiana and Michigan. Since 2016 he has been directing the Baking and Pastry Arts Program at Lake Michigan College, where he develops curriculum, teaches classes and coaches students for national and international competitions. He owns the Luis Amado Chocolate Academy in Stevensville, Michigan, where he offers personalized and small group chocolate classes to students from around the globe. His work has been featured in numerous magazines including The ACF National Culinary Review, Revista Dulcypass and So Good Magazine.
Chef Amado is very passionate about competitions, and has captured more than 22 gold medals and 6 best-of-shows awards from competitions including the 1996 Culinary Olympics in Berlin, The 2000 National Dessert Competition, numerous ACF-approved Culinary Arts Salons, The Great Lakes Regional 1999-2003, and most recently the 2017 AUI Chocolate Cup in Washington, D.C.
In this episode we discuss:
- Luis’s entré into the world of food as the owner of a churro cart
- How a customer helped him enroll in culinary school in the U.S.
- Luis’s passion for culinary competitions
- How the student became a teacher
- His style and process for developing new chocolates
- His tips on working with chocolate
- Advice for future chocolatiers
- Why he decided to open the Luis Amado Chocolate Academy
- And much, much more!
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