Senior Executive Chef
As senior executive chef, Patty Mitchell, CMB, brings to the Kraft Culinary Centre her extensive knowledge of and deep passion for baking and pastry. She's charged with developing recipes that speak to today's trends while offering workable menu solutions for our customers. Her biggest challenge? Knowing when to walk away. "I'm a perfectionist," she says. "I always feel like I can make one more tweak—even when the customer loves it." Chef Mitchell brings that perfectionism to our ideation sessions, making our team even more dedicated to creating the best recipes possible.
Home: Hillsborough, N.J.
Education: AOS from The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), Hyde Park, N.Y.
Employment: I joined the Kraft Foodservice team in September 2010. Previously, I was director of research and development at San Diego-based Crestone Group Baking Companies. Before that, I was a baking and pastry instructor at the CIA.
1st job in foodservice: Burger King! Then I went on to a small restaurant in northern New Jersey to gain experience, so I could get into the CIA.
Greatest accomplishments: Doing what I love every day and never taking shortcuts.
Favorite dish to cook at home: A nice soup, like potato-leek. Or a comforting pot roast in the winter. In the summer, a beautiful fresh fruit tart.
Favorite cookbook: I have two, both authored by good friends of mine. The first is Southeast Asian Flavors: Adventures in Cooking the Foods of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia & Singapore (Mortar & Press, 2008). Robert traveled through Southeast Asia for years, getting up close and personal with people to learn the traditional ways to make the recipes contained in his book. My other pick is Chocolates and Confections: Formula, Theory, and Technique for the Artisan Confectioner (Wiley, 2007) by Peter Greweling. When I read this book I can hear Peter speaking. Both authors put the love of their craft into their books without holding back.
Most rewarding part of my job: Seeing one of my recipes in a restaurant.
The two or three people from history (living or dead) with whom I would most like to have dinner: I would love the opportunity to cook for my grandmother. She was always so excited about my culinary career, but didn't live long enough to experience much of it. I'd trade dinner with anyone to be able to have another meal with her. Professionally, I would most like to have dinner with Julia Child. She has had such an influence on American cuisine, and she's so interesting: She was a woman who kept cooking despite the many hurdles. She kept at it because she loved it.
Sound byte: Good enough is never good enough.
Favorite recipe recently developed for Kraft Foodservice:
I really enjoyed the development work behind the Molten Chocolate Cheesecake. I had to find the right formula to get the ganache to flow—without overheating the cheesecake element. That was fun, and I'm really pleased with the result—a delicious twist on a favorite.