I’ve been fairly busy recently. Work’s picked up, summer is nearing an end, etc.
To finish last week our chef instructor wasn’t there Thursday or Friday which were veal days. The first day was veau blanquette among a few other things. To say that folks in my class don’t understand the concept of braising is an understatement. Enough about them though.
If you don’t like the taste of veal you won’t like veau blanquette. The flavor was nearly overwhelming, but at least I like the taste of veal (even despite the lovely production methods that bring it to our tables). I don’t have a photograph, but imagine a bowl of white. White sauce, white meat, over – you guessed it – more white, rice.
On Friday – with a different chef instructor – we learned how to pan-fry, in particular Escalope de Veau a la Viennoise and the legendary Veau Cordon Bleu.
Much to my surprise I found pan frying to be a pretty natural thing to do, so much so that you’d think I’d done it before. Perhaps too much sauce on the plate (really just a brown butter, or beurre noisette), here’s a photo of the Viennoise:
Early this week we focused on pork. Yesterday was stuffed pork chops, braised fennel, cream of asparagus soup (which I also made for dinner last night) and an apple compote. Aside from the asparagus soup, the rest of this meal would be perfect for the fall. Of special mention was the apple compote which was just amazing.
Today we moved on to the majestive and massive lamb – our chef’s favorite form of protein. Quite possibly his favorite dish in the world is roast rack of lamb persille. He made this for us in Meat Fab and today we made it for him. I ended up receiving extra lamb to cook – being one of the favorites has its perks as well as a few drawbacks.
Being the second of the lamb dishes that we prepared today – yes, we had a veritable orgy of lamb, there was grilled lamb with a gratine of cauliflower earlier – I only had so much appetite for the persillade. Nevertheless, the Chef expressed some concern that I wasn’t eating as much as I should, even going so far as to say that “I don’t want you to lose weight in this class”.
Most of our classes are only 14 days, but due to some special scheduling the current one is 15 days. This essentially means that an extra day must be filled, and our ever giving chef has given us another day of preparing the massive and majestic lamb on day 14. I asked today if we would be able to prepare lamb shank but he’d already put the order in. I have a feeling we’ll be making some sort of lamb stew next week since our homework assignment today was to write a paper comparing and contrasting 3 different Middle Eastern lamb stews. Here’s a link to the one I found most interesting and will probably try at home once it cools off some.
Two sad bits of news recently – the recent news from Grant Achatz that he has cancer. And finally this sorry bit of news about the influence of the marketing department at McDonald’s, despite the fact that their food tastes like shit and is so unbelievably unhealthy.
Chin up though, for tomorrow I cook that most beloved of creatures – the rabbit.