Information Technology Services (ITS)
IT@UofT People — Anthony Betts
Published on: January 18, 2021
The backbone of any successful team is its hard-working people. The University of Toronto’s Information Technology Services (ITS) division is privileged to employ outstanding individuals with diverse talents that extend beyond work-related education and skills.
In this segment, entitled IT@UofT People, we will get to know our IT@UofT team across the tri-campus community and find out more about their hidden or not-so-hidden talents and/or pursuits outside of work.
Name: Anthony Bett
Department: University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) Information & Instructional Technology Services
Title: Senior manager, IT Client Services
How long have you worked at U of T?
What is your secret or not-so-secret talent(s) and hobbies outside of work?
I love to cook! I spend a significant amount of time in the kitchen or wherever I might have stashed something that I’m fermenting, as well as reading, researching and thinking about my next food project.
How and why did you get involved in these hobbies?
Everyone has to eat, right?! There’s no end of options and possibilities when it comes to food — from something that takes a few minutes to put together to a multi-month or year fermentation project.
When/how did your interest in this area(s) begin?
I’ve always enjoyed being in the kitchen, but it was mostly following recipes and calling it a day. I really became interested in the hows, what and whys of cooking around 2009, after building a terracotta smoker. I was learning about what happens to large chunks of meat when you smoke them and learning to use — and the importance of — time and temperature as essential ingredients.
After that, there was no looking back. I started focusing on the science and technical aspects of food and quickly became interested in technique and fermentation for any and all cuisines.
Do you have any professional training in this field?
Who/what are your inspirations?
Kenji López-Alt is my food hero. His Food Lab series on Serious Eats was the most significant influence for me early on when I learned about making the “best” of anything and the science behind it. It will forever inform how I approach my various projects. His book, The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science, is a seminal cooking reference book and it would be the one book I’d recommend every cook should have.
Can you tell me about some of your latest food project?
Stuff I’ve made that’s (edible) in the kitchen right now:
- West Indian lamb curry
- Coconut rice
- Pressure cooked, pickled mustard seeds
- Greek yogurt
- Bread (80 per cent preferment)
- Pita bread
- New York style pizza sauce