It's been a while since I completed my Rouxbe Professional Cook Certification course. I have had an opportunity to reflect on the program; as well as put some of my new-found skills to use.
I knew this day would come eventually, but I am sad none the less. I really enjoyed the Professional Cook Certification program through Rouxbe Online Cooking School.
As part of my final unit, there was another Black Box assignment, which I both dreaded and stayed up all night excited about. For this assignment, I had to prepare three recipes highlighting specific ingredients as part of each recipe. In the end, the three recipes provided a composed dish.
Plating Assignment: 4 of 4 I made a turkey and stuffing terrine with Brussels sprouts petals, carrot caviar, panko-crusted mashed potato sticks with gravy spheres, all atop a bed of herbed noodles. It took all day and tons of chemicals including agar agar, sodium alginate, calcium lactate, and soy lecithin, but it was really fun!
Plating Assignment: 3 of 4 This flavorful go-to meal consisted of pan-fried chicken medallions with a light ghee sauce that included minced ginger and lemongrass, a baked rice that included coconut milk, green onions and cilantro, as well as infused carrots that had been simmered in lemongrass and ginger. The meal came together quickly and with little fuss. While the rice was baking in the oven and the carrots simmering away, I was able to turn my attention to the cooking of the protein. If it doesn't smell right, it rarely is.
Plating Assignment: 2 of 4 This savory butternut squash soup consisted of a laundry list of ingredients including butternut squash, bitter kale, and salty bacon. In addition, I added sage and Eastern spices. In the process of making the soup, I used the following techniques: sweating of mirepoix, reducing of wine, skimming of impurities, simmering of soup, blanching of kale, pureeing of soup, sautéing of sage. Cooking the soup was really a matter of cooking ingredients (sometimes separate, sometimes together), layering flavors, and tasting as I went. I also relied on my nose to help me as I went. If it doesn't smell right, it rarely is.
Plating Assignment: 1 of 4 This meal was exactly what I needed today. Warm, creamy polenta is perfect on a cold, rainy day especially when paired with a tender cut of beef. I simmered the polenta for a little over a half hour at which point, I turned my attention to the protein. After searing the tenderloin, while allowing it to rest, I deglazed the pan with some stock and shallots. Once reduced, I added a knob of butter and set aside.