Yes, I am still in culinary school. Yes, I am terrible at blogging. No, this probably won’t be the last time I totally disappear from this blog. I apologize. School, work and Netflix have taken priority the past few months (except that one time I went to Asia *omg*).
Anyways, I just started my third semester in culinary school and my second semester of working in a commercial kitchen. To say the least, I have learned A LOT. Some things I knew how to do (thank you, Food Network), others – no clue. However, there is a lot more to learn as I am still at the bottom of the food chain, but it has not been a bad experience whatsoever (except when I burn or cut myself).
I work at The Tradition on Lovers Lane, right behind Central Market. Tradition is a senior living center for independent-living seniors, assisted-living seniors and seniors in need of memory care. We provide breakfast, lunch and dinner for all the residents of those areas from two fully loaded commercial kitchens. Independent-living seniors are free to pick and choose which meals they would like to attend.
As a prep cook, I have taken on a number of tasks including plating desserts, making salads, making dressings, baking cookies, pulling chicken, chopping, cutting and dicing fruits and vegetables, assembling party platters, proofing and baking rolls, making soups, etc. I could go on for paragraphs. I love every minute of it.
One of the best parts of working at Tradition Senior Living is our executive chef, Peter Curley. When/if I leave this job, I will probably never meet a chef as kind, humble, soft-spoken, patient and caring as Chef Peter. He has been a wonder to work for and learn from. Not to mention, the rest of the staff is just as fun and easy-going. I really can’t complain.
School has been incredibly enjoyable as well and I am even more eager for this semester. Last semester I was a little more nervous than eager and didn’t know what to expect, but working in the kitchen helped with that. My classes were fundamentals of baking and basic food prep. In “fun bake” we learned the basics of breads, pies, tarts, cookies and cakes. We even made donuts! I loved it all, but learned that I’m not quite sure I have the patience for baking. In basic, we focused on stocks, soups, sauces and dishes created from those basics. One of my favorites to eat was the eggplant parmesan. Surprising? I know. I also really enjoyed learning how to make a béchamel sauce, a basic white sauce that can be turned into a cheese sauce for mac n’ cheese (one of many variations).
This semester I am enrolled in purchasing (meh), dining room service (learning the front of house aka serving – eek), and advanced food prep (oooh ahhh). During the second day of advanced, we learned and whipped up hollandaise sauce and poached eggs for eggs Benedict AND omelettes. Eggs on eggs on eggs. By the way – almost forgot to mention this – we get to eat all of these yummy things we make. If reading about all this food isn’t satisfying enough, you should add me on snapchat – it gets even better. It’s basically my mini blog. I post pretty much everything I make/we do in class and sometimes post things at work, but I’m usually too busy. My username is marrleey. See you on snap!