Thursday, October 22, 2009

No One on the Corner Has Swagger Like Us...

Yesterday was my last day of New World Cuisine. It was also the date of my final exam and my practical exam. I got a 98 on my written final (go me!) and I'm not sure yet what I got on my practical, but I'm sure it was good. Each of us had to truss, roast, and carve a chicken, make a pan gravy, grill four vegetables, one of which had to be a fibrous vegetable which was blanched first, grill a pork chop and make french fries using the two step frying process for fries (blanch in oil, then fry). Everything but the pork chop was to be plated together with the pork chop on a separate side plate. Below you can find some photos from yesterday's class!

Also, today was my first day of Soups, Stocks, and Sauces! My chef is really funny and her humor reminds me a lot of Ellen DeGeneres :) She even said "word," "swagger" and "mad cool" today and also would quiz random students who stopped by the kitchen to get stocks for their other classes with stock or sauce related questions before she would allow them to go into the walk-in and get their stocks. It was really funny. Some of them couldn't remember how to properly make a stock even though they'd taken the class the previous year! I'm really excited about this class. Although making stocks is a slow and quite boring process, I'm looking forward to learning the inner workings of all the mother/leading sauces and their "babies," the many variations of each (note: babies is not an official term for these sauces, I just think it makes sense, haha). Also we'll be learning basic techniques for creating various kinds of soups as well, including thin, thick, clear and specialty. Finally, and maybe most importantly, this class will have a focus on knife skills as well, where we will be honing in on our various knife cuts and will later be tested on producing all the various cuts along with making a couple sauces and soups for our practical assessment on the last two days of class.

In this class we also have the luxury of dining every single day in the dining room for lunch, and in our case we are especially lucky to dine in the senior dining room, which is not only staffed by seniors but also seniors from three different kitchens cook all the meals, so you know the food should be of a higher caliber than in the other dining rooms. The decor is a lot nicer as well, and our drinks were even garnished much better than they were in the other dining rooms :) The three kitchens serving this dining room are a European cuisine class, an Asian cuisine class, and a special functions cooking class. Today my table dined from the Asian class, but I took some photos of the Italian foods as well since they had show plates on display before you entered the dining room. Check out those pics below as well :)

My beautifully carved chicken, in 8 perfect pieces :)

My final plate for my practical exam, minus the pork chop I had to make

Minestrone Soup

Calamari

Risotto with Asparagus and Shrimp

Grilled Veal Tenderloin

Penne with Chicken

Caprese Salad

Menu for the Asian Kitchen: Day 1

Iced Tea

Szechwan Soup

Wonton Soup (this is what I had)

Appetizer: Mongolian Fire Pot Table Side Service (I partook in this as well)

Mongolian Fire Pot

Barbecue-Style Roast Duck with Mandarin Pancakes, White Rice, and Braised Eggplant with Dried Shrimp (my dish)

Braised Eggplant with Dried Shrimp and Shanghai Fried Rice (side dishes for...)

Crispy Sweet and Sour Fish (shared between two diners... I tasted this too, really good!)



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