I'm studying the Grand Diplome at Cordon Bleu in London

Today was about dishes from the Touraine area of the Loire Valley, that is around the city of Tours. A very pretty area of France, with plenty of Chateaus and vineyards.

Chef Gilles took us for the demo and practical again today.

The first dish was Fillet of Pork with prunes, stuffed mushrooms and Dauphine potatoes.

The pork fillet was sliced lengthwise to create a pocket which was stuffed with halved prunes, then rolled up again and tied to hold the shape. This was browned all over in a pan then roasted in the oven.

A duxelle of mushrooms was prepared and used to stuff the mushroom caps, topped with some butter and parsley breadcrumbs and baked until golden on top.

Dauphine potatoes are a mix of mashed potato and choux pastry, formed into quenelles and deep fried.

Finally, the sauce was made from the pork trimmings, sliced onion and shallot, Vouvray wine (a specialty of the region), veal stock and cream.

The dessert was a sweetened cream cheese mixed with whipped cream served with raspberry coulis and strawberries and redcurrants topped with a little fresh mint. The chef moulded one cheese in a ring then served it on a plate, and one in a ramekin, topped with coulis and the fruit.

   

In the practical we only made the savoury dish which wasn’t too hard. The potatoes puff up when frying and turn into a very light and airy accompaniment to the pork and the mushrooms were full of flavour from the duxelle. Another tasty dish which seemed to evaporate quickly once I got home. How does that happen?

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