Saturday, June 13, 2009

Artsy Fartsy

You're looking at my latest Garde Manger creations! I have to admit...when I heard we were carving fruits and veggies for this class- I was super nervous especially as she stated that the artistically gifted would appreciate this most. I have never taken an art class and am an AWFUL artist... we're talking stick people here. So she shows this super intimidating movie where the chef is carving masterpieces within seconds and then she send us to work. Luckily she was super chill about it and just wanted us to be practicing and be as creative as possible. My products actually turned out really well and I was happy with my results. Looks like I'm more artistic with a knife and food than I am with a pen and paper.
So school has been getting better. I think the decreased "lecture" times and more "labs" helps a lot. It's hard sitting in a classroom all day trying to stay awake- actually using our hand and creating stuff in the kitchen can keep anyone awake. This week we have Boys State over in Camp Dodge at the military base. There are three seperate kitchens and we are assigned two days in which we prepare 3 meals a day for hundreds of teenage boys. Each individual kitchen only serves about 100-200 so really it's not as bad as I originally thought. Today we had to go on site and finish cleaning the kitchens and then actually got to feed some of the counselors that are there already. It was short and quite fun actually. During one of our breaks we threw together a game of kickball. I'm hoping that my group and I later in the week can manage to get along and function at five in the morning and survive til eight at night.
Other interesting happenings at culinary school:
I sauteed and ate my very first foie gras. It was crazy because our professor showed us this graphic video of how the duck liver is acquired (let's just say forcefed and electricity) and then she wants us to go into the kitchen and eat it!? Everyone but me liked it. The taste I could handle, the texture was a whole other story.
We also made homemade mozzarella in this class and it was super good!
Unfortunately I haven't had baking since my last post. Of all the classes- why must the one I love most be delayed?
In Food Prep 2 we've been preparing for boys state. Made brownies last week and managed to get my chef's jacket covered in batter thanks to Cody. Needless to say- the stains still have not come out (yeah...not a happy camper). Made chicken stock in this last class and it was really fun though time consuming. Smoked up some pork to take to boys state for bbq sandwiches.
I decided to stay in my Menu Planning class. I am slightly behind the rest of the group at the moment though. I have a restaurant name, location, concept and all that good stuff. I even have a few recipes picked out. I have yet to decide which recipes I will really use, how to cost it all, and properly researching some of my basic concepts (i.e. trademarking my name, researching demographics of prospective location, etc). It is indeed a lot of work but I'm finding it very beneficial.
It may be another week before I blog again. With boys state going on, classes are cancelled. Woot woot.

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