Saturday, January 20, 2007


Well today so far has been crappy! I woke up at 8:45 thinking I set my alarm for 9:45! And I had nightmares ALL night so i was tossing and turning all night and barely slept. Oh well. I was so excited cause today at 2pm was when the internet guy was coming. I got up and cleaned some stuff then realized I was still rather tired so I got back into bed until 10:30 and was planning on leaving the house at 11 to run errands. I woke up and France Telecom calls to say they will be there in 5 min and he doesnt speak english very well. Unfortunately/fortunately my roomate, who speaks better french than i, was home sick from school today so she could help out a little. So the guy comes over as well as the mail. Well my paperwork arrives about my longterm visa! My appt isn't til march and it's on an exam day!!!! I had a nightmare about that last nite also! Anyway...little upset, but I can't do anything about it til I get to school on monday. So the internet guy is trying to speak to us, neither of us proficient in french, and we are trying to explain to him that we don't have the key to the electrical box that he needs. Well my roomie runs downstairs to see if the "concierge" (landlady to us) is there, but she isn't so we can't get the key to open the door to get to the box. So the guy leaves. :( So, I put on clothes to go to France Telecom to set up another appt. In the meantime, a button from my redcoat pops off...i save it. I go to the store, with a piece of my gateau basque for Frederic the only guy there who speaks english, and he wasn't there! So this other guys helps me and it wasn't letting him into the system so he asked me to come back in an hr! So i had to run an errand anyway, so i gave the cake to him and I left. Meanwhile, andother one of my buttons falls off...i save it. So i go to BHV (the HUGE department store that has 6 floors of everything imaginable) but they ofcourse don't have what I need :) I get a few things and go back to France Telecom. And to my luck the next appt is...Jan 29th :( So once again I will be stealing internet for another 8 days...and hopefully my roomate can talk to the landlady to open that room before it happens! So i came home and the second i walked started to downpour...luckily i got home cause i didn't have my umbrella! But i realized I forgot to buy thread to sew my buttons on! argh! Before i knew it, it was 5 pm, so I showered and put on clothes and went to Kaili's with some frambroise and bought a baguette. I arrived and she was making us some eggplant parmesan! It was so good. Then I had a frambroise and ate so many madelines and tried to fix her computer! no go! But she took a picture of me as I was saying "if i had a third hand, I'd put it down my pants!" pretty funny.

Then we left the house to meet up with our friends Melissa and Rick at a bar. We did some drinking then at 1:30 we all left cause the last Metro stops at 2! Well...I got on and took the 4 to the 10. At Odeon (where the 4 meets the 10) at 5 min to 2...the train stopped! So to my luck I had to walk home!!!! 45 min later and after having Kaili so nicely direct me home cause I was so confused with my map (and she made it home!!!) I was home in my bed :) at 3 am my time...and no clue what time it was in AZ, I called my parents to tell them what happend! they laughed. The sad part was that i was completely sober so it wasn't even funny! However, at another other age of my life, I probably would have been freaking out crying needing to call my mom or catch a taxi or something. But last nite, I was completely calm, relaxed and realized, I'm in France, alone and there is nothing I can do about i may as well just walk home! It was so great and the night was beautiful! Overall I had a perfect nite! TRES BON!

Jan 19, 2007

Well...for some reason my alarm decided not to be heard today even though it was set. Maybe I was just overtired and didn't hear it, but I did hear my roomie at 6:45 on the I woke up on time. Got ready for school and sara called again to wish me a good day at school! how cute is she :) Then at 8:30 I had CP and we made sirloin with potato puree! My first time cooking meat! It was thrilling! We had to start from scratch. (oh i forgot to mention that first we marinated some other meat in red wine for our next practical we have which is making beef burgandy) Anyway, we took our slab of beef and cut off all the fat and then tied it with a string to keep it together! Then we seared it in a pan with very hot peanut oil. Then into the oven while preparing everything else. So exciting! I made the aus jus with vealstock and juices from the meat/veggie trimmings. Anyway, after i plated it all, we had to tell the chef how we chose to cook our meat and he told us if that was correct temp or not. I said mine was Medium Rare and he said I was correct and the meat tastes good. He said my potatoes were perfect texture and actually the aus jus had just a little too much salt (i know can u believe it) but it made up for the fact that the meat didnt have enough salt. But my presentation looked great! I had to cannal my potatoes...very hard...and i'm not too good at it yet...but not bad! I learned a new thing (i've actually learned a lot but havent posted it all) anyway, meat should always be placed at the lower right hand of the plate and the veggies/dressing should be upper left! check that out next time you go to a restaurant! So overall my meat dish was superb! yah!

Then we had a big break from 11ish to 3:30! So Kaili and I ran a few errands...including picking up some ice cream to counterbalance the meat and came back to my place. We ate ice cream, she read and i sat on the computer, then we fell asleep for and hr and 15 min. We walked back to school at 2:30 and got ready for 3:30 CD. We watched them make Prime Rib and finish off the Beef Burgundy that we have already marinated. Both very tasty. At 6:30 we had PP. YUM! I'm so glad that at 6:30 in the evening out of either cuisine or pastry we were doing pastry cause thats kinda late to be working! anyway, we were making the St. Honore which is the Choux Paste and pretty much whipped cream. Not too shabby! Anyway...class was fun cause we had Chef of my favorite chefs!(crappy picture below!) He is silly so i took a picture of him!

Anyway, I started to whip my cream and I got very light headed. Probably a mixture of not enough water, too much meat in 2 days, and not used to being in a hot kitchen for so long! I was sweating and just needed to stop to drink some water so i didn't pass out! Made it through class needless to say...and about 10 lbs heavier cause i ate so many cream puffs! I did however, throw out my cake cause i didnt want it in the house...i did take a picture though! Chef didn't say anything about our cakes. He was in a good mood one min then not another so i guess he graded us throughout class and didn't tell us. He did say my carmel was as dark as it should be and not to ever go darker. Oh and then he goes "Shutup and listen to me" well i said to him, that "shutup" was a bad word and to use "please be quiet" instead. He didn't quite understand, so my friend Melissa who speaks french explained it to him how it was a bad word and he felt horrible! He kept apologizing and starting using his new words that I taught him. So we shall see if he uses that from now on! Otherwise class was a lot of fun...but ended at 9:15 which was a hell of a long day!

Came home...didn't eat cause I was so stuffed and went to bed cause I was so tired!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Jan 18, 2007

Much better today! Good day actually! I woke up and then at 7 am my time, Sara, my bestest friend, called me and i got to talk to her for a while including my entire walk to school! It was a nice morning :) Thanx Foxy! Then at 8:30 we had PD. We learned Choux Paste...not my favorite stuff in the world. Best explaination for it is the stuff that eclairs or profiterales are made out of. The yellowy dough stuff. It's gross when not eaten with ice cream or pastry cream. Anyway...Chef made very traditional french pastries today called St. Honore and Paris Brest. I will be making St. Honore. The Paris Brest was Choux Paste, and a praline mousse. Pretty good...better than the St. Honore. Then at 11:30 I checked my email and relaxed. At 12:30 I had CP. A new Chef that we've never had before came into our class like 5 min late and he was kinda scary because he spoke NO english and was very demading! Anyway...we made Feuillete de poireaux et oeufs poches with sauce albufera. Which translated is a puff pastry with leeks, a poached egg and albufera sauce. SOOOO good. It was so hectic in that room today! I also made extra puff pastry which you can see in my picture! If you look all the way to the right at the top of that picture you can sort of see the music note i made :) Anyway...Chef only tasted the sauce, looked at the puff and said be on your merry way! was a first sauce was salted enough!!! yah! he said it was "tres bien" (very good) I liked it too...however it was very salty in my eyes. He said my puff "puffed" very well. It was fun to make, it looked good and it tasted even better!

Then at 3:30 I had a CD. We started the meat today. We learned Rump Roast with carmelized onions and carrots and Sirloin with Potato Puree (mashed!) Both very tasty! and it was the first time in maybe 3 months since I have eaten red meat! so yummy...but we shall see how my tummy reacts tomorrow! I came home at 7 and made/ate the same salad i did last nite along with my poached egg dish! Such a good dinner! Then i showered and now im doin some online chattin! Then read and bed! Good day ;)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Jan 17, 2007

Every have one of those days when nothing seems to go right? well it wasn't so much that things didn't go right, the day just didn't feel right and i wasn't a happy camper! I had my first cuisine practical at 8:30 and we made puff pastry (like croissant dough...but this is a savory dough). We only made 4 turns to it today...we will make the other 2 tomorrow. I've made this dough before so it wasn't too hard for me, plus the chef used my dough to demonstrate the first turn (meaning the first time he rolled it out). We also made quiche lorraine...which is pretty much an omelete with bacon and cheese in a savory tart. Chef said usual...didn't have enough salt. This whole salt thing is going to kill me one way or the other. If i put too much in I'll get a heart attack and if I don't put enough in my grades will suffer ;) So i better start saltin it up! Otherwise he said it looked alright.

Then at break I started to not feel well, so I ate my banana and walked with my friends to the grocery store and got some more fruit, but I just wasn't hungry. At 12:30 we had a CD and we learned how to use our Puff Pastry to make this really good poached egg dish which I think I'm making tomorrow. As I've been explaining, we demo and then usually (well for my group) we practical the next day. So when I tell you what I watch, I'll go into more detail when I actually make it. We also watched them make a fresh fruit tart...needless to say that was very good. It was with almond cream. However, by the end of class (even though I tried the food! duh) i wasn't feeling too well. My stomach just felt upset. So at 3:30 we had PD and our teacher was Chef Bernarde! He is the award winning Pastry Chef at school in charge of the entire school's Pastry Department. I knew this was my chance. Well I didn't get off to a good all know me...I have a loud mouth, I talk a lot. I don't think he liked that much! I did tell him I went to the french pastry school in chicago and he said he was going there in 5 days to teach a demo and he knew my teachers well. So that helped me ;) He is also very good sometimes it was hard to pay attention :) Anyway, as I was working, I dont know what happened but I spilled something and then when I went to use it later I didn't have enough of the pastry cream! I just kept spilling things in class. However, unlike me in my normal life, I am VERY clean in pastry class so I clean up all the time. So it wasn't horrible...but I was just unorganized for myself today. Not feeling like myself! I was behind everyone and it was uncomfortable to work slow. So i finished my Gateau Basque right as everyone else did (i guess there were a few people behind me) But i just wasn't pleased with it. Anyway, time to decorate! OY...what a mess. I just laughed. And when I did i got shushed by Chef for being too loud :) Anyway, in the end when my cake came out of the oven it had a big crack in it, which you can see in the picture. That is from not pushing my apricots down before putting them in my cake. WHAT?!?! i must have missed that in my demo. And I wasnt the only one who missed it...but i was one of the few whose cake it affected. So i wasn't a happy girl. The Chef mentioned that and told me that was the reason why. He said he liked my decoration (we only had two to choose from...but you can totally see the uneveness) Personally, I think he was looking at ME when he said he "liked my decoration" if you catch my drift ;)

After school I went to buy fresh lettuce, dijon mustard, EVOO, and red wine vinegar. I came home mixed those ingredients and made salad dressing then put some of the duck my roomie made yesterday on top of the lettuce with my dressing, plus some of the gnocchi she made also. My dinner was great. Then for dessert I tried my cake. Not bad...not the best thing i've ever made.'s been a long day and all day I've just wanted to go to I think i'm gonna do that early tonite. Another long day tomorrow. Toodles

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Jan 16, 2007

Today was a great day! I woke up, went to PD at 8:30 as usual and watched how to make a cake..which I will describe better when I make it :) And Diplomat's Pudding...which is essentially bread fav! However once again they put in that nasty candied it didn't taste very good. Anyway, we ended at 11:30, then Kaili and I went out to shop til we dropped. We didn't succeed...but it was fun anyway! First we had some pizza (my first pizza in France!) Not the best...but all pizza is to me :) Then we shopped around one center and I bought a pair of houndstooth checked peddle pushers which were on sale and are SUPER cute! Love them! Then Melissa, our friend from Switzerland, met up with us! We went to this fabulous department store called Bon Marche...and as usual...I couldn't really afford much :) It was like Nordstrom...but pricier! ha! So I didn't buy anything! We sat down for some mid day coffee/snack then went on our merry way!I went home with Kaili and we went to the Market to shop for food. She cooked me this pasta with veggies. The sauce was made with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice, basil, parmesan and prolly some other yummy stuff! It was amazing! It's definately going to be a weekly happening! she is a great cook and I must take her up on her offer to cook me dinner often! So then I came home at 7:30ish...and am going to do the usual...shower, internet, read and bed :) au revoir

Monday, January 15, 2007

Jan 15, 2007

Today I didn't have school til 12:30...ahh so nice :) So I woke up at 8:30, showered put away my dried laundry and used my still working internet! Then at 10:30 i went to the post office to mail mom and dad a post card, then met Kaili for a coffee. Then at 12:30 we had a PP. We made Madelines and Fruit Cake. My Madelines were perfect. However when I tasted them, i definately put too much vanilla extract in them...but i liked them. Chef didn't taste them, he just judged by look. When we pipped them, I put just enough batter in the mold so that the little bump came out well.

My fruit cake looked ok. I didn't put rum on top because i think that's what i didn't like about it in class. I tried it at home...I liked it much better! Chef said that my decorations were too simple. But you all know me...if I did what i really wanted to do, it would have been TOO elaborate, so i tried to stay on the safe side and that obviously didn't work. Oh well! I had fun anyway. Then we had a CD where we learned Puff Pastry (stuff to make croissants and other fun stuff with!), quiche lorraine, and a wild mushroom quiche. For not liking bacon...that quiche lorraine was pretty tasty...but the wild mushroom one was out of this world! I wish we were making that one! I may have to attempt that at home this week :) Then i came home, and at some of my nasty pizza...which i threw the rest away. No more anchovies for me! And ate some Madelines. Been talking online for a while now. Going to go read and go to bed. Bonne Nuit

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Le Louvre

Today I woke up at 9:45 and did my laundry, which is still drying (prolly for the next two days!), vaacuumed my room, washed some dishes, ate the rest of my tart, ironed my uniform, and finally sewed my pants! They were so long something needed to be done! Then I ventured out on another city walk! Today I went to Le Louvre by using another City Walk tour. (I think that is going to be a sunday ritual now--and i'm also going to eat out at one of the places on the card every sunday too...however i couldn't find todays and the first one on the card i passed up cause i wasn't hungry!) Below you will see as many pictures as I could take...without getting yelled at :) Came home, at the rest of my chicken. Now I'm going to chill, prolly read and then hit the hay! I have some stolen internet again so I'll prolly browse the internet and respond to emails. Love to all. Au revoir

Jan 13, 2007

So today I woke up at 8:30 which was very nice and today was the day that I sat at the cafe for a few hours and blogged. But I didn't blog about todays day. (confusing, but currently I'm sitting in the bathtub in my house where i get an ounce of internet connection writing this blog!!!) anyway, class started at 12:30. We made the french fake pizza. It has onions, garlic, tomatoes, anchovies, olives, and capers which was optional so i didnt put them on.

My dough was said to be perfect...I don't know if he meant texture wise, taste wise or cooked wise...but whatever it was I'll take it. Oh i forgot to mention today was the first cuisine class I was graded for. So this class on I will be graded! YAH! Anyway, my onions were also well cooked...plenty of salt he said, seasoned well. And as far as my design...he liked it ;) This is the chef I like...Chef Cotte. I'm on his good side. He is in charge of the Basic Pastry program so I tried to schmooze with him. I think it worked. He knows me as the girl from chicago. So it's fun! Anyway, class was a lot of fun with him. He always goes "Yee Haw". Don't know why...but it's funny! Then after class, I walked home, bought some Frambroise (my favorite raspberry beer which I've been looking for forever) and some fresh mozzarella cheese! I came home washed my whites (uniform!) even though it took me an hr to figure out my washer! And we don't have a drying machine here so I have to let my clothes sit out! it takes forever! Then I ate some of my fake pizza but I added cheese to it :) Then I showered and got pretty for the first time since being here and went to Kaili's and had a glass of cheap wine. Then we went to Juan's house with a bunch of other peeps. At 12:30 am I went home but everyone else was staying out til 5 because the metro closes at 12:30 and reopens at 5 am...and I'm not ready to do that yet. sorry :( But i had fun anyway! I like the people here a lot. However I feel old. Most of my friends I'm finding out are 18...but there is no drinking age so it's like they are my age anyway...and it doesn't matter! Went to bed at 1 am :)