Thursday, September 27, 2007

LJ-razz, 7.04.07: class was rockin' even though it was small

Class plating: steak, asparagus, bearnaise (from hollandaise), horseradish scalloped potatoes. I know my sides to meat ratio isn't very good, but I like asparagus much more than I like steak, so in my opinion, I did well. Plbtbtbtbtbt! I wanted a garnish to plant my asparagus stems into, but I didn't have time to make one, and I didn't want to just stuff the ends under the potatoes.



We were missing three people, so there were only six of us. I think the kitchen seemed to run more smoothly, but the guys seemed to slack off and disappear from the kitchen a lot. Sally kept up on the dishes tonight, which was rad. I'd put stuff at the station, but I never even had to push a rack into the commercial dishwasher. I set up the wash station, and for the most part, I really didn't spend much time there. I grilled about 60 slices of thinly sliced eggplant, which was totally fine. It smelled so good, and the grill only caught on fire a couple of times. Woot!

Aside from the stuff mentioned above, we also started Gravad Lox and Terrine of Goat Cheese and Eggplant with Almond Pesto & Balsamic Vinaigrette. We'll finish them off on Wednesday. I'm looking forward to seeing how the first terrine I've ever worked on turns out! I'll admit, I really wanted to make one, so I put myself on that dish and doled the other stuff out to everyone else. I was going to just kick back and volunteer, but everyone asked me what they should do. I kinda wish Chef would take on that duty, but technically, it's not his job to dole out dishes--just to walk us through the recipes at the beginning and check on us throughout the class. Okie dokie. I was going to have Dylan make the pesto, but he does that every day at work, so I put him on the lox, which I'm also looking forward to finishing and trying.

The guys kinda gravitated together and did everything together, or ignored everything together--our potatoes had been sitting out awhile before Chef finally harrassed the guys into getting the steaks on the grill. Then they sat around for awhile until I mentioned that they should probably put the steaks in the oven to finish cooking. Then again, at that time, they were rare, which is how I like them. Chef said they could stand to go in for 7-10 minutes, though, even though he likes his cow still mooing, too. The worst part about having my classmates ask me to dole out assignments is I don't really feel like I can tell them what to do. I'm used to my team where I hand out the dishes and they work at it until it's done. With this one, I had to walk Fabian to the steaks in the sink, and he puttered around because he wasn't sure how to get them out of the bag, and then wasn't sure how to season them. When I walked by, he was salting them sparsely, mostly because his hands were wet and the majority of the salt was sticking to his hands. It was so funny! I helped him with the seasoning, then walked away. Five minutes later, while I was helping Victoria line up her mise-en-plage for the hollandaise sauce, I heard Chef grouching at the guys to get the steaks on the grill. Of course, two of the guys were outside smoking, and I don't know why Fabian didn't just grab the pan and start grilling. Dylan came in and started grilling, instead. I'm so glad he grilled it perfectly; I'm used to dad's overdone steaks.

Victoria's bearnaise sauce was killer awesome on the asparagus, and Sally's Horseradish Scalloped Potatoes were killer awesome in general (and Chef taught us how to use the round form, which is no more than a cookie cutter, but somehow rad nonetheless because it's with a savory dish that isn't baked), and the steak was a bit chewy that I blame on its being in the freezer, but it had a good taste in general. Dylan was upset because I packed up Chef's to-go box, and everyone had grabbed their steak to plate, so he was left with a steak with an unfortunate fatty tumor off one side. He's such a good guy. I just wish he'd show off by getting a super lot done in the time he gets (like he did the first few classes) instead of doing his part kinda eagerly and then just lounging around or hiding around some corner somewhere. The worst part about when he does it is that the other guys do it, too, even if Marla and Dan are in class.

Ah well. Despite all that, I think we all did a kickass job cooking tonight, and we cleaned up really quickly. I sliced the eggplant on the meat slicer without losing a digit, and I sweated a gallon on the grill (not literally on, but at) and didn't mind a damned bit. Plus I got to bring home the last of the leftover potatoes. Yum!

And I got 100% right on my quiz. Yey!

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