Thursday, December 03, 2009

Taking stock ... no, that's making stock

Wednesday's session in Culinary Foundations II was about as real as it gets when it comes to simulating restaurant kitchen work.

Besides the final practice run for today's five-dish vegetable and sauce competency exam, two of us had to start and mind a big pot of chicken stock. We did so under the watchful eyes of Chefs Dan Fluharty and David Isenberg.

Into the huge pot we dumped 75 pounds of chicken bones (photo at left) for a pre-heat and rinse to get impurities out. Then we emptied and discarded the water, refilled and added 15 pounds of mirepoix -- coarsely chopped onions, carrots and celery. Fellow culinary student Alfie Regadio prepped the herbs for inclusion once the temperature came up to simmer. He also did one pass of d├ęgraisser and ecumer -- degrease and skim -- to remove excess fat and foam from the simmering stock. The night class would finish the stock, we were told.

Amid it all -- mostly getting the stock started and occasionally eying its progress -- we did our prep and cooking work on vegetables and starches.

If my artichokes (photo at right, with hollandaise sauce), rice pilaf and pommes duchesse turn out today as they did in Wednesday's practice, I will be happy.

No comments:

Post a Comment