Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Monday, August 30, 2010
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Yesterday, we prepped for Poe'ler Duck Breast and Turkey Breast Scaloppine. Lots of fowl breast were exposed yesterday and cremated today. We did get to "fabricate" a duck. It's like a chicken, but different. How's that for a statement! I haven't been posting every day due to the class procedure of prepping the day before we cook. Blogging about prepping and mize in place is somewhat boring and repetitive.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Monday, August 23, 2010
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Today was another great day. After doing most of our mize en place yesterday, we set out to complete two dishes. First up was a roasted pork tenderloin with a pan sauce, pickled red cabbage, bulgar wheat pilaf and sliced apples sautéed in butter and sugar. Then beef stew, again. We did beef stew twice in Foundations II, but it was on the menu again for today. But this time with Tourned (tour nayd) vegetables.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Monday, August 16, 2010
Friday, August 13, 2010
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Monday, August 9, 2010
Friday, August 6, 2010
Friday was fish day. And duck day. They threw a duck dish at us at the last minute. But we got to scale, filet, prepare and cook filet of sole. Lightly breaded served with a Lemon Beurre Blanc (burr blanc) sauce. It was really cool to do.
Beurre blanc is a sauce done with shallots, white wine, a bit of white wine vinegar, reduce to almost nothing, add cold cubes of butter and finish with lemon juice. You have to emulsify the butter in the reduction.It's kind of like making a Hollandaise without egg. It breaks easy and is very temperamental. Its key is to have it done when the fish is ready. You have to strain it through a chinoise (chin waw) into another pan, not too hot, not too cold or it will break. Trying to keep beurre blanc is next to impossible. Timing is everything.
So I put up some pictures of my sole for your enjoyment and I'll be working on beurre blanc sauce this weekend and forever more. If you look closely, you may see my sauce is broke. But my soul is intact.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
We did two exciting chicken dishes today. Ballotine de Poulet Grandmere and Stuffed Chicken Breast Doria. For the Ballotine de Poulet Grandmere we deboned a leg/thigh combo and then stuffed it with sautéed onion, celery and portobello mushrooms. Then you roll it and then wrap it in caul fat. More on caul fat later. You sear it and then remove and deglaze with white wine, add mira poix, tomato paste and then chicken stock. The key is beurre manie (beurr man-yea). That's equal parts butter and flour just combined but not cooked. This thickens the sauce and makes it shiny. BTB ( bring to boil) and into a 350 oven to poach for 20 minutes or so. Or as we are told, "Till it's done." Picture included.
The Stuffed Chicken Breast Doria is also rolled, but is poached in 165 degree water. The stuffing is called Forcemeat. I'm sure that part is left off the menu. You make a chicken mousse with egg whites, mixed herbs, creme fresh and bread crumbs. That gets rolled up in a pounded chicken breast, rolled even tighter with plastic wrap and then rolled again in foil. I felt like I was back in the 60's. Then poached in water for 20 minutes. Or, like I said earlier, till it's done. No picture of this one, sorry.
Time was running out, so I didn't sauce the Doria. Or saute the tourney cucumbers. I did put raw cucumbers and chopped chives to finish the dish. Chef was impressed with my stuffing and degree of doneness. Seasoning was good too. Just needed to finish the darn thing with a sauce.
The Ballotine de Poulet Grandmere was really tasty. I ate that one. Then I remember what caul fat is. The squeamish may want to stop now.
Caul Fat: The lining of a pigs intestine.
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Buying cut up chickens is expensive. It takes about 2 to 3 minutes to fabricate, or cut, a chicken into parts. Ah, but the secret is to know where to cut and what not to waste. We also had to airline the breast ( french the wing bone to the first joint) and make a breast supreme (boneless). Cut a leg thigh combo and separate leg from thigh. The interesting thing about fabricating a chicken is you never ever cut a bone. The joints are in locations that make fabrication rather easy.
So my game hen has rested. We roast (le rotir) a bunch of root veggies and make a pan sauce. The girl I'm working with takes her hen up just before me for the Chefs critique. Her game hen is cooked perfect. Mind you, our hens went in together and came out together. Mine, was so under cooked, it looked like it was still able to give blood to the Red Cross.
I just can't truss them hens.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
In my earnest attempt to do each dish, I got a bit confused. As I was grilling my pork chop, I went ahead and started my Veal Scaloppine. Butterflied the veal, dusted it with flour and cooked it in a bit of oil. Then I deglazed the pan with Marsala wine. Added some demi glaze and reduced it. I went over and took my pork chop off the grill as it was done. I placed the polenta on the plate, placed the chop on top of the polenta and added the carrots. Then I promptly put the reduced Marsala sauce on the Pork Chop and garnished with chopped parsley. I was told my carrot were too small and the sauce was too sweet and needed more salt. (no kidding)
If you were able to keep up with that then you know that the Marsala sauce was suppose to go on the Veal Scaloppine. Not to be detoured, I got more Marsala wine, reduced some demi glaze, added it to the pan, put in the Veal cutlet to heat, plated my potato tourney, green beans with roasted peppers and bacon. Then placing the veal on top of the green beans I spooned the new Marsala sauce over the veal and garnished with chopped parsley.
Chef told me my plating could be better. Stack the veal a bit higher on the green beans. Also my potatoes were way over cooked.
What, no extra credit for Grilled Pork Chop alla Marsala?
Monday, August 2, 2010
Today we worked on Le Cuisson, Frier (Fr). Or if you must, deep fat frying. We made Fish and Chips and, one of my favorite foods, Shrimp and Vegetable Tempura. It was our first attempt in using the deep fryer. Funny, there are probably 10 million teenagers out there that have done french fries at McDonalds or burger joints all over this country. I never have. Le cuisson is the same for both dishes. The difference is the fish is breaded using the classic egg wash technique and tempura is a batter. We made tartar sauce for the fish, mine was excellent, and the wonderful dipping sauce of Dashi, soy sauce and mirin. You put in grated ginger and daikon radish to dip your tempura food in. My batter had too much egg yoke and did not crisp up like it should. Chef Wang told me my frying was excellent. Need to work on my batter. So today was relatively easy and fun. Tomorrow, two completely different entree's and lots of prep work and tons of dishes. Veal Scaloppini Marsala with Tourned potatoes and green beans AND Grilled Pork Chops with Glazed Carrots and Soft Polenta.
Naturally, I'm on dish detail tomorrow.
Sunday was fun as Chris and I went to a fellow students home in Hermosa Beach, where I helped make risotto. For 8 people. It came out great. Nancy, our host, made a wonderful mushroom ragu that we added in. Good people and fun times. Even better was showing off that we know that risotto is a cooking technique and not a dish. Ooohh's and Ahhh's.
Some folks are easily impressed.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Friday ended our fourth week in Foundations II. For the first time, we were able to cook with proteins. That's right, beef and chicken were on the menu. Using one of Le Cuissons to cook our proteins, we made Beef Stew and Chicken Fricassee. Can you name le cuisson we used to cook these dishes? If you said braising, then you can move forward. Otherwise, back to Foundations I for you and no fricasseed chicken. Fricassee? It almost could be used for a swear word, "ah, go fricassee yourself!" But instead, it's a great way to do chicken. Making a liaison sauce (cream and egg yoke) reduction and adding it to the stock used to braise our chicken, it would be great over the homemade fettuccine we make on Wednesday. Yumm!