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Quarterly Newsletter Published by Michael's Cookies, Inc.

Issue No. 8
Spring 2001

Spotlight On The Stars

Ryan T. McNutt
C.C.C. Executive Chef

Ryan began his career at the age of 14 when he entered the culinary world in an entry level position. Born and raised in Valparaiso, IN he spent the next 20 years honing his skills by working in such diverse foodservice establishments as freestanding restaurants, country clubs, catering companies, resorts and corporate hotels which were primarily located in the Midwest. During the years spent in these establishments he realized that he ultimately wanted to run his own kitchen so he could have the freedom to express his creative nature and most of all be able to teach and share his culinary ideas with his crew.

While working as Sous Chef at the Devil’s Pool Restaurant at Big Cedar Lodge Resort he was fortunate enough to be supervised by Chef Robert Strickland CEC. Under his guidance and training Chef McNutt aspired to become an executive chef and pursued schooling to become certified in his chosen culinary field.

After receiving his certification he turned his sights to the corporate world and started working for the Hilton Hotels chain. After 3 years with the company in varied kitchen positions his talent and hard work were rewarded when he was offered the position of Executive Chef at The Club at Mission Dorado Country Club in West Texas. Here he is able to unleash his passion for food and ice sculpting, creative areas that are near to his heart, and continue to work with his fellow chefs and follow the examples set for him by his mentors by passing along the knowledge he has gained over the years.

Recipe Round-Up

Chocolate Nut Bark
Makes 20 to 30 pieces

  • 16 oz. chocolate (bittersweet, milk or white)
  • 2 cups whole nuts (almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, macadamias, pecans or pistachios)

Melt and temper the chocolate. Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper. Stir the nuts into the chocolate coating them completely. Turn the mixture out onto the baking sheet and spread with a spatula to a thickness of 1/8 inch. Place the baking sheet with the chocolate/nut mixture on it in the refrigerator to allow the chocolate to set up (15 to 20 minutes). Remove from the refrigerator and let the bark sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Using wax paper hold the bark with the paper and break into pieces. (Using paper to hold the bark when breaking prevents finger marks appearing on the bark).

To store, separate the bark on layers of parchment paper and place the layers in a tightly covered container. The bark will keep for 1 week at room temperature when stored this way. To store for longer periods of time wrap the container tightly in several layers of aluminum foil. The bark will keep for 1 month in the refrigerator stored this way. For best results the bark should be removed from the refrigerator and brought back to room temperature prior to serving.

Click here to download PDF with more information.

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