Day 49: Squeeze Those Lemons.
T.G.I.F. and boy was I cruising down Sunday morning. In other words, I was positioned at the pastry station and did a lot of waiting around for my dough to quit being such a diva. I had to make the lemon tart dish today! What I mean by diva is that I had to wait till my dough got cold in the fridge, then had to get her tan on in the oven first by blind baking and then removing the blind baking elements and really getting all sun kissed to perfection in the oven. By blind baking, I mean you roll the dough onto the baking ring then you get parchment paper lay it over it and add beans. The beans help the tart to remain it’s shape, so that you can allow the dough to cook longer before having to add the lemon tart custard in which only takes about 20 minutes to cook. So, step 1 is making the dough. This pate sablee (dough) is so fabulous and buttery, it would make the best cookies ever! Once, all the ingredients were incorporated my diva dough had to chill in the fridge, so that the gluten could relax. After about twenty minutes, I then rolled the dough out in between two plastic saran wraps and then covered the ring mold. Diva dough had to go back into the fridge to chill some more. Finally, I blind baked her with the beans until the crust got golden brown and then put her back in all by herself, so that her whole body could tan.
In the meantime, I began making the lemon filling. I zested six lemons and strained the juice. I mixed that with eggs, fine sugar, and heavy cream. Once my tart was all golden brown, I let her relax before adding in the filling. After adding the filling, in she went for about twenty more minutes until the filling didn’t move when I shaked it. Diva lemon tart has to cool down before serving it. Chef tasted all four of the pastry people’s dishes at the same time and told Tyler and I ours were PERFECT. The squeals that came out of me- you have no idea. Smiling so wide and just giggle central like a yellow teletubby. That made my whole day/week/ I’m just so proud because I really started from the bottom and now I’m here.
After presenting, we had our second sous vide lecture. Chef demonstrated how to cook proteins in low temperature cooking and vacuum sealing again. He even made a beautiful plate for us with the meats and veggies.
I got to know Chef Veronica more in depth today because I helped her bring some of the extra food upstairs in the elevator. I think she may be my favorite teacher thus far. No joke- she means business, is SO observant, her feedback is ON POINT, yeah she may bust your balls a bit- but, she really takes what she does seriously and genuinely wants each and everyone of us to succeed. Chef was also shocked when she heard me speak fluent Spanish with Carlos because she thought that came out of nowhere. Little does she know I’m a Jewban from Miami! Chef lived in Spain for a while as a chef and a painter (cool I know!) There is an older lady Mary who quit her corporate job to come to culinary school to get into culinary media/ marketing. She has been having an extremely tough time getting along with chef and was hysterically crying today, so I lent her my shoulder to cry on in the bathroom while she vented about her family crisis (horrible) and how difficult this is for her. She greatly thanked me after class. Oy, I hope she doesn’t quit- she can do it and I told her that! Anyways, that was my good deed for the week. Josephine and Pandora (two French girls) were laughing how I always know the gossip and that everyone tells me their personal information. First of all, yes I love to get the scoop, but second of all I actually like to think of myself as a genuinely nice and caring person who makes other people feel comfortable enough to tell me these things! Maybe you two girls should try it! Hehe
Monday is another mock midterm where we have to cook two dishes BY OURSELVES. Dear lordy- I gotta get ready for this!