Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Hitting the sauce

The transition is seamless as students enrolled in the Chef de Cuisine diploma complete their Cook Basic training and move on to Advanced Level 2. First on the agenda for the current Advanced class, along with some Basic students and alumni, was three days of prepping, cooking and serving a Christmas lunch to almost 400 children at Hess Street School.

Jessica works up a bechamel sauce.
Kevin starts his veloute with a roux.
The glow of team work and camaraderie that made the Christmas lunch lively, fun and efficiently executed will follow everyone that pitched in to make it work. With such a concentrated curriculum to work through in the next 15 weeks though, our students have little time to digest the experience before returning to the kitchen.

Essential groceries for sauce week-
the reason those sauces taste so good!
After a quick review of mother sauces (bĂ©chamel, veloutĂ©, Hollandaise, brown and tomato sauces), Chef Dan demonstrated an array of small sauces that are borne from these five. Students cooked up a few of them; the rest were relegated to quick jottings in their kitchen bibles. Chef delivered a homework-in-the-making heads-up: they will be making sauces from their own notes in a few days, and will need to remember much more than turkey gravy and cranberry sauce. 
A lot of sauces start with quality stock,
so this spigotted stock pot is often on the
back burner. 
Students' kitchen bibles are their best friends
when a demonstration includes twenty sauces. 

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