Week 4- Cold Hors d’oeuvres

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Natane's California Rolls.

Today we prepared cold hors d’oeuvres. We tried a different tactic this week and split the food recipes up between three of us and had the fourth person prepare all the sauces and dips that went with the main items. When the sauces were complete, the fourth person helped the rest of us where needed, an opened the oysters for Oysters Rockefeller. I was in charge of the Chicken Salad on Profiteroles, as well as Crab and Somen Summer Rolls. Ian prepared the Beef Carpachio, the Adalusion Gazpacho in Cucumber Cups, and the parmesan pepper tartlet shells. Natane prepared the California Rolls and the Shrimp Mousse in Bouchee.
I was excited to get to make profiteroles again. I made them in Pastry my first quarter at AI. I was glad I remembered how to make them correctly. They turned out perfectly- they tasted like they should and they rose perfectly. I know that I am a good baker, and I know I have talent, but sometimes you get that niggling little voice of self doubt telling you that it’s just a fluke when things turn out right. That little voice is quieting as time goes by. I am beginning to trust myself and my instincts more. One of the other students tried to pull my profiteroles out 3 or 4 minutes earlier than I ended up pulling them out. He said they were dry enough. I broke one open and instantly put the tray back in the oven. They were perfectly dry when I pulled them out. Instincts.

The chicken salad was tasty. Everything was cut in tiny pieces and it looked bright and colorful. Then the top of the profiterole got put back on and you couldn’t see the cheery chicken salad. Apparently I could have served them with the tops half off and a toothpick through them to hold them together. I had thought that since they were a “passed” hors d’oeuvre, the tops would need to be on securely so they could easily be picked up. Always something to learn.

I was happy to learn to make the summer rolls. This was my first experience making “sushi”, but I found it enjoyable. I definitely could use some practice to get my rolls nice and perfectly tight, but I am sure I will perfect that talent when I take Asian.

I also got to experience oysters for the first time. I was a little apprehensive, but pleasantly surprised. I enjoyed the cocktail sauce that accompanied the oysters, and they were served on a bed of ice and therefore REALLY cold. I think that is key. I could see the experience being ruined by the temperature being lukewarm. Not only is it unsafe, but would have the texture of a booger, I would think. Blech.

I didn’t get to taste everything today because I had to duck out as soon as he was done critiquing our food. It’s difficult with this class ending so late to get home in time for Marc to get to work. Chef is already letting me duck out a half hour early and it’s still a scramble to get home on time.

I really enjoyed Ian's presentation of the Beef Carpachio, though. I love how he made the little hummingbird out of a pepper.


jennifer said...

Omg heather, I want to be a tester in your class. And yes the hummingbird was cute, lol.
It all looked good, not a big oyster person so I can't say.
The hot ones looked very good. I want to try one of those risoto balls.
I've learned not to read this blog first thing in the AM because now I'm starving and am thinking about what's for lunch. Lol.

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