What’s up?! I hope you’re having a wonderful day/evening depending on where you are!
Let’s dive right in.
Cake week got extended so that we finished two of our entremets on Monday. Unfortunately, while the cakes were all very well constructed, we never had enough time to work on the finish, so that I really can’t even show you how amazing they were. So you’ll have to use your imagination.
As I mentioned last week, we made a bûche = a log cake.
The center is a berry jelly, next is a layer of chocolate passion fruit biscuit, and finally everything is surrounded by a mango mousse.
Cake number two has a hazelnut biscuit, hazelnut cream, and almond milk mousse. I loved the flavor, especially of the almond milk mousse, which has a deceiving name because it is actually made my adding almond paste to hot milk.
Our third cake also used the hazelnut biscuit, but this time in combination with a citrus cream and a white chocolate mousse.
The final entremet was a pear caramel cake. For most people, this was their favorite. Personally I really didn’t like the pear flavor. I’ve never been a huge fan of pear, and the cake lacked acidity in my taste. The pear was simply too weak next to all the creamy textures and favors.
We are now in chocolate week, which began with chocolate décor for our cakes. We learned a cool technique that uses splattered or sprayed colored cocoa butter and a base of white chocolate. Yesterday, we made the most delicious bonbon yet: it was filled with two layers – a salty almond hazelnut cream and a mango passion fruit ganache. I had to give mine away so that I wouldn’t eat them all at once!
In cuisine, we finished with two more fantastic dishes last week. On Thursday, we served sizzling foie gras with caramelized quince, pepper marshmallows, and crispy tuile. I couldn’t help but eat all the foie gras at once… Followed by all the quince!
Friday’s dish was stuffed mussels, galère (a strange langoustine-like creature), and violet (an even stranger sea creature that grows on rocks). We added a filo pillow that was super fun to make!
But that was last week. Now we’re back in fish week (#3)!!! Our first dish was sole with a chestnut filling. The fish was placed on a bed of risotto-like lentils. The garnish included chestnut mousse, salsify glacé à blanc, and a fish skin tuile.
Yesterday, we made turbot cooked on the bone, served with a swiss chard millefeuille, glazed radishes, cayenne cream, and fish stock foam. It was fun working with swiss chard and radishes, which aren’t easy to convert into delicious and well combinable ingredients.
But the highlight of the week is that today, I got a complement from Chef! I may be exaggerating, but he said that my plating was good and that the ingredients worked. The task was to create a dish using zander, whelks (a type of sea snail), and vegetables cooked en papillote. We were able to choose from different methods of creating a papillote and were free to choose the garnishes. I cooked sweet onion boats with a potato, leek, and truffle filling and topped with beetroot slices in a bonbon papillote. Next to this, I served the fish, slow-cooked sous-vide, topped with a bit of potato filling, blue brussel sprouts, and whelk as well as a beurre blanc.
Can you read the enthusiasm? I am literally so pumped and I don’t want to leave!