Monday, 29 January 2007
le cordon bleu - day 1
It seemed that both the nervousness and excitement was shared by all of us who commenced Basic Patisserie at Le Cordon Bleu today. There were 14 of us (some previous culinary students, a baker/chef, with the majority of us being fresh-faced, dessert eating - love baking students who were still getting the hang of all the tools in our toolkit and cautiously pulling at tools in the hope of not being the first casualty of the day). Turns out I have a pretty smart class; we all managed to stay safe and by the end of the class, everyone had managed to complete their tasks for the first lesson without any major dramas.
Personally, I found there was a lot to take in for the first day. From remembering to address the teacher as chef, to finding my way around the college, to remembering each step in the cooking process as we watched the chef demonstrate, and finally, to get through a day of being up on my feet, to remember my classmates names and just to stay awake during theory class. For the first time, I think I'm actually understanding why people say baking is a tough profession. It's definitely not for the faint-hearted and despite my passion for Patisserie, I think there will be hurdles ahead for me to cross. Working towards my idea of a cafe has become more realistic than ever and really, it's going to be a tough one.
Classes have definitely exceeded my expectations. Teachers are prepared and not one bit of class-time is wasted doing nothing. It seems to me that classes are structured in a way that gives you the freedom to work at your own pace. Today, we made scones and for those that had a bit of extra time, were given the option of doing another batch. For myself, I just made the one; not because I was slow but for the fact that I presently have 16 scones in my kitchen which I'm quite unable to eat. It looks like two more different types of scones tomorrow in addition to some other baked goodies. I start to wonder about my waistline. My friend from class was already sighing about her thighs which she was convinced had grown in the course of class time. Yay, we also have a kitchenhand to help us clean up!
In addition to scones, we also made royal icing and practiced piping. It took me awhile to get the icing to the right consistency (after a couple of burst piping bags due to me putting pressure on a blob of really gluggy icing). Probably need more practice on piping. We piped cream onto the scones; that was relatively easy.
On the whole, an awesome day. I think I'll still need to get my classmate to do up my necktie; I think it's similar to how guys do up their tie. Not the best baker in the world yet but definitely training to become one; got lots more to learn but in the meantime, will require some sleep. Ciao!