We started the day cooking the Lobster with bortsch consommé from last week.
Next we had a demo where the chef prepared pig’s trotter stuffed with foie gras and wild mushrooms, which was braised and then glazed with the reduced braising liquid.
Next, he cooked onglet steak, which is a tougher cut of beef, with fondant potatoes, beef jus and egg and chive vinaigrette.
The last lesson was finishing and presenting our plated desserts.
It turned out to be another chef John day as we had had him for the previous practical and demo and we had him for this class too, which was surprising as he is a cuisine chef, not a pastry chef.
My plated dessert (we had to design our own) is a white chocolate mousse with a raspberry jelly centre, encased in a joconde sponge with an orange and cardamom sablé base and an orange glacage. It was topped with a fresh raspberry and a white and dark chocolate lattice circle. On the plate is a tuile crisp, fresh raspberries, chocolate curls, mango coulis and creme anglaise.
After the Queen’s jubilee long weekend we had 2 practicals today, from demos last week, and then a chocolate tasting lecture.
The 1st practical was making the stuffed artichoke en croute and we had chef Neil (Armstrong) for the 1st time this term. Chef Neil was fresh back from a holiday sailing around the Hebrides (though I suspect it was a moon trip!).
A straightforward practical and not too bad for just vegetables, though when the chef asked how this dish could be improved, I suggested some meat.
Next we had a patisserie practical with chef Graeme to make the exotic fruit mousse. Again, not too hard though I though the flavour would have been better if it was just a mango mousse rather than mango and coconut.
Here is a picture of my finished dish. As it was a tropical flavoured mousse I made a tuile palm tree as part of the decoration.
Lastly, chef Nicolas (also just back from holiday) gave us a lecture on chocolate tasting and we tasted a dozen different types of chocolate of different origins including a couple of milk chocolates, a strawberry flavoured chocolate confection and also an orange one, and pure cocoa butter and cocoa paste (pure cocoa mass and cocoa butter, unsweetened). It was interesting to taste the different flavours discernible from a range of dark chocolates all of 70% cocoa solids.
Today we had a cuisine demo and a pastry demo.
The cuisine demo, with chef Gilles, covered a couple of fish dishes from Provence.
The 1st was Bouillabaise which is an intensely flavoured fish soup with pieces of fish and rouille, a harissa and saffron mayonnaise like concoction.
Next was a dish of grilled red mullet fillets sandwiched together with tapenade and tied with chives, served with crispy julienne of leek and basil oil.
Then we had a pastry demo with chef Graeme.
He made an exotic fruit mousse, flavoured with coconut and mango, in a sponge decorated with coloured tuile paste to give a hatched effect, and served with a fruit salsa and some tuile biscuits.