Chef Fritz Blank.
Green & Gold Horizons, Winter/Spring 2002.
© Jerry Millevoi


From Silage to Salad

Chef Fritz Blank was born and reared in rural south Jersey among victory gardens, chicken coops and duck pens. Fresh seafood and small game such as rabbit and muskrat were a regular part of family meals prepared by his German grandmother. Her kitchen influences are some of Blank's earliest memories and continue to shape his cooking today at his Philadelphia restaurant Deux Cheminées.

Before becoming a chef, Blank earned degrees in dairy husbandry, dairy science, medical technology and clinical microbiology. He worked as an analytical chemist at the USDA Agricultural Research Center at Beltsville Maryland until accepting a commission in the US Army Medical Service Corps where Captain Blank functioned as a Clinical Laboratory Officer for five years. After leaving the military, Blank earned and completed a Masters degree in Clinical Microbiology at Thomas Jefferson University, and was the Associate Microbiologist at The Wilmington Medical Center. He later functioned for five years as Chief Microbiologist at Crozer-Chester Medical and Regional Burn Center, until opening Deux Cheminées in 1979.

Chef Blank is a frequent contributor to the Oxford (UK) Symposium on Food & Cookery and to the annual International Workshop on Molecular and Physical Gastronomy in Erice, Sicily. While Blank no longer makes silage, cows keep a special place in his heart and form a continuing decorative motif in his culinary library of over 10,000 volumes.

© 2002 University of Pennyslvanian Library Trustees