Saturday, March 10, 2007

Un Beau Jour

Wow...I didn't even realize how late I was sleeping because I was so comfortable in Kaili's bed ;) We woke up at 12 and I put on my clothes from last nite and did the "walk of shame", but i took the metro so I didn't have to look too foolish for too long! It was GORGEOUS outside. Sunny and warm. No coat needed today! Well I got home and I changed quickly and went right back out the door and met up with Kaili, Lauren and Trephene at Breakfast in America at 2ish. That's some great food the day after drinking...grease and all ;) Then we walked around for a while and eventually wound up at the movie theatre and Rick met up with us. We went to see Dreamgirls at 4:45. No was in english...with french subtitles. I may have picked up some words! Anyway, this was my second time seeing it and I love it so much. I pretty much cried the entire movie. It's such a great story with beautiful music. I just love it. Then I walked home at 7 when the movie was over. Spent a few hrs putzing around online then hit the hay! So far it's been a GREAT weekend. And I am blessed to have such friends.

Friday, March 9, 2007

March 9, 2007

Well I woke up this morning at 5am to begin my studies for my exam. Well not begin, cause as you all know I've been studying a lot! But further my studies since I didn't study last nite! Well I didn't feel well cause I ate meat last nite (don't feel bad lauren!!!) she feels bad cause she ordered it! it's really ok...i did it to myself. Not to mention i ate too i felt bloated. anyway, i read over my notes and left my house around 7 to go to school! As i arrived i saw all of my friends at the coffee shop and I was thrilled cause all I needed was a double espresso to start me off! So i walked in and what a wonderful way to start the day off was by meeting Katie's Husband who is intown! VERY EXCITING!!! He bought us our coffee which was very sweet. Went to school, got dressed and as you can see as my main picture now is me in my chef's uniform, I actually got around to taking it! (thank you kaylee...heehee!) Well we all lined up waiting to hear which two dishes were chosen and which one we were going to be doing. As I walked in, I got a yellow chip and ALL of my friends got blue chips. He announced yellow is rabbit and blue is brill. OY! I knew i took all those rabbit pictures for a reason! So i worked my butt off today! I knew what i had to do. I had to bring it to the table! YES! And I did. I don't know if I was allowed to take pictures, but I did. I wasn't sure how to present it, but we had to present all of the food we made, not just one piece like in practicals. So voila!

After we finished a bunch of people went out for a beer. I went to sit...but I was not about to drink because tonite was pub night for le cordon bleu. One night at the end of every trimester LCB rents out a pub for all of the students and its all you can drink beer and wine plus one cocktail and little snacks. Anyway, I sat with my friends and gabbed about the final for a while and then went to the gym. Came home and crashed. I took a much needed nap. Then eventually I cleaned my room, and refolded all of my clothes (i was bored!) and then got dressed for my evening! I went to Kaili's at about 9 and we all met there. Then we went to the pub which was called The Frog and British Library. It was fun! You can see the pictures. I think they explain it all. (cause there sure are things I don't want to explain or that don't need to be mentioned! HAHAHA!)

Afterwards at about 2:30 Lauren and I and Kaili went back to her house and I ate two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and some ice cream...ok a lot of ice cream (i hadn't eaten all day except for a pear and some baguette!) and then at around 3 we fell asleep! What a GREAT nite! I love my friends :)

March 8, 2007

I woke up this morning pumpped because it was my last real day of school! And it was a very good one at that! I started off making Duck a l'orange at 8:30, plus the parisian style gnocci. Class went very smoothly. I tried not to ask too many questions knowing my exam was the next day. All was good. I went quick, and clean and didn't mess up much. I did put a little too much grand marnier in my sauce...but it tasted oh well! Chef said my duck was cooked perfectly, and everything was seasoned well. He said my plating was beautiful. I thought so too! haha. I tried to step it up a notch for my last class before Basic ended! So overall I had a very good last practical...and might i say it was very tasty!

Then during break i went to the daily monop to get a sandwich and brought back some goodies for our demos and the guy gave me a rose. Later I found out it was international woman's day! how cool :) Then at 12:30 we had a PD. Chef made a Bergamot, which is an orange flavoring, cake with a chocolate mousse. It was yummy. There was an orange crisp in it. Just so good. He kept passing around samples in class also! Great class. Then at the end of class they opened up champagne for us! how nice. So we toasted. It was great. Then at 3:30 we had our LAST CD and last class for the trimester. And they really kicked it into high gear!!!! Lauren also decided to come to class with us so it was much more fun!! We learned rack of lamb with an herb butter crust, potatoes au gratin, and baked alaska! All three amazing! Then THEY popped open champagne. Today was good eats, good drink, and GREAT company :) Then instead of the gym, Lauren and I walked to the 4th, which was a good hr walk if not longer and ate LOADS of falafel and hummus and lots of other goodies. I ate so much I don't even remember! Then on the way home we got gelato. Lauren had Mango and raspberry and I had biscotti and creme caramel. They make it into rose shapes so I took picture. I think it made it taste better!!!

I eventually got home and before I knew it, it was 10:30 and I had my 8 am practical exam the next morning! AHHHHH. So i went to bed at 11. Read on to find out what happened.....

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

March 7, 2007

It was a lovely morning! I woke up and ate a very nice breakfast with plenty of time to cram some extra studying in! Then I walked to school and was also there with time to relax before my 10 am pastry exam. Same format as I explained for the cuisine one in the last blog. I finshed within 30 min. It was rather easy. I missed a few questions, but I didn't expect to get them ALL right ;) Then me and a few of my friends went to some brasserie for breakfast. I just had a cup of coffee to treat myself to my written finals being over. It was some GOOD coffee too. Flavored with chantilly cream on top! heehee. Then we came back to school and we had 12:30 PP. We made the Alhambra cake. We got to make two molds, one for the cake and one to take home plain. It was good plain and probably better for breakfast ;) Anyway, because I didn't imbibe enough yesterday...I imbibed the crap out of my cake! I did really well too...chef said so! However, today's pipping was bad! It's cause after I put my ganache in my pipping bag I put it on the marble and it got cold and hardened up! oh well. But we made chocolate roses today and I'm getting better. It doesn't look like a cartoon anymore...or so Kaili says! heehee. But i like my leaves better than my rose. Chef was impressed with my work in class today. So overall I did a good job.

Then after that class was a CD. Both Kaili and I left our recipes at home! So we borrowed Leo's who NEVER uses his recipes :) He usually sleeps! We learned good food today! Escargot in a pastry case with herb butter and wild mushrooms, pikeperch and herb sauce with ratatouille, and duck a l'orange with waffle chips! YUMMY!!!! i ate two escargot boats! haha. they were sooo good. I can't wait to make the duck tomorrow! Then after class I went to the gym and studied a little. Came home and was worthless. Showered, ate dinner, chatted online, sent emails about our exam, and am going to bed. Tomorrow is the last day of classes!!!! Then two more exams and I'm done with basic!

March 6, 2007

Well today was the day when it all begins! I started class at 8:30 and ofcourse no one was concentrating! We had CD. We learned a warm goat cheese salad with bacon, stuffed chicken legs with madeira jus and carmelized apples, and a chocolate mousse with orange salad. They were all good INCLUDING the goat cheese. Yes i know...i actually enjoyed the cheese and would even go out and buy it! i think i found a goat cheese i liked! yah!!! So, then during lunch everyone was studying. I went with my friends to the coffee shop, but the studying started to overwhelm me so I left to go take a walk. I picked up a sandwich and these candies called smarties for my friends for the final (get it?!) and i started to walk and just get some fresh air. Before I knew it...I was at Mcdonalds getting a Mcflurry :) Oh well...I guess my test anxiety needed some Mcdonalds! Gotta give it what it needs! hahaha. It had peanut M and Ms in it. really good. Anyway, then I walked back to school to make the stuffed chicken legs at 12:30. We had a chef we don't usually have and we don't like him very much. However he was in a better mood this time. Class was pretty easy. A LOT of waiting around, for chicken to cook, or sauces to reduce. Not fun! Anyway, after I finished my dish I was very proud of myself except for one thing. I reduced my jus so well it was the perfect consistency...BUT i over salted it. I know I did. So I brought my dish to chef. He said too salty. But everything else was good. I was so mad because for the first time I had the correct thickness! Oh well...i learned! I had a very nice presentation though. Unfortunately my sauce ran by the turned apples!

Then class ended early and my friends went to get coffee...but I couldnt even think of leaving the it was raining. So i just sat in the winter garden and handed out my smarties :) Then we all lined up at 3:15 to go into the class room. We sat down and got handed our test face down. Oh...this is the cuisine written exam by the way. There were two parts. One was the main test...all mulitple choice, true false, and association. The second part was Bon d'Economat in which they give you a recipe with blanks on it and you have to fill them in. I had to memorize 10 recipes and they pick one and leave 10 blanks anywhere within that recipe and the person next to you doesn't have the same one :) Then I had to fill in a questionnaire about school. blah blah blah. I got done within 30 min. It wasn't as bad as i thought it was gonna be! However I don't think I did amazing. You only have to get 50% to pass...and i think i did better than that. It's only worth 10% of your grade anyway. My cuisine practical part of the test is friday! Anyway, after class I went to the gym to let out my anger for missing this one stupid question that I should have gotten right!! Came home, ate dinner, showered, and then studied for Pastry! Then went to bed :)

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

March 5, 2007

Ahh, what a monday. I woke up, went to PP at 8:30 and we made the Pistachio and Ganache roll. Not as easy as it looks. My chocolate got everywhere! And Chef was once again not very friendly. I don't know if this is confusing...but everytime I say chef...i don't mean the same chef. We ALWAYS have a different chef, I mean sometimes it's the same one...but I usually don't use their names to honor their privacy ;) (like i care!) Anyway, the pistachio genoise by itself is very tasty. Something I would probably make often. However when you put it with the ganache it's just too heavy. After I assembled my cake, in which I did very well with organizing today, I showed it to chef. He said my piping was gorgeous but the only thing I did wrong was I needed more imbibing syrup to soak my layers. I figured that because when I made it, I only soaked one side of each of them. So i know for next time. They are really into soaking the shit out of the sponges here! They want them SOGGY! Plus all of the syrup we make has liquor in that's the other reason ;) It was a very messy cake and I'm glad it's over with...however it brought back memories of my family, cause I know my dad's side of the family LOVES pistachio and chocolate--so for family holidays that's what i'm making! beware family ;) love you

Then we went for coffee, still not drinking coffee. (yesterday was my first one since that last time I told you I wasn't drinking coffee) I sat and talked with my friends. We chatted about how we thought this test wasn't going to be too hard. I'm prolly over studying, but you know me and my 1) paranoia and 2) test anxiety. I'd rather be over prepared. Then we came back for a PD. We learned the Alhambra cake. MORE chocolate. It was primarily the EXACT same cake as the pistachio one, but instead of pistachio cake it was a hazelnut/chocolate cake. The layers were the same and everything. But it was SOOO chocolatey. It was a bit overpowering. After class was over I chatted with my friends for a few then headed to the gym. I studied really well when I was at the gym. Then I came home, showered, made myself a LOT of veggies for dinner (i was craving them) then talked online for WAY too long, studied, talked on the phone, studied, then went to bed.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Joyeuses Purim!

Well yes...It was a day for the jew to come out of the closet ;) I woke up bright and early and left my house by 9 am to start my jewish festival! To start my jew day off right, I spent almost 5 euros on a my first cup of starbucks coffee! OOOh, but it was worth it ;) Try converting that to american money. What a rip off! I proceeded to walk to the Jewish Museum. Now for all of you jews out there reading this I am sure you will take a liking to this. The first sunday of every month all of the museums are supposed to be free. Well was ours?!?! NO! ofcourse not. Us stingy jews need every penny we can get...including me! So I paid my money, student fee ofcourse, and got my "free" listening guide in english and walked through. I spent almost two hours learning a lot of stuff I already know. However this museum was a blend of Judaism and Art which is unlike any other jewish museum I have ever been to. And who knew Chagall was Jewish...did you? So i did learn a few things! Then I started my city walk through Le Marais and my first major guessed of Lenny Kravitz's favorite place in paris...L'As Du Falafel!

I had the BEST falafel i have EVER eaten in my ENTIRE life! It had so much in it I can't even remember! It was almost the size of my head...and only 4 euros at that! As I was standing in line 2 jewish guys, obviously, come up to me and ask if I'm jewish. I say yes, and they hand me a bag with a hamentashen, some purim candy, 2 pennies and a card explaining purim. He said, "today is purim" I said "I know". He said something in hebrew. I said thanx. And he went off screaming and dancing!

They were all dressed up. They were blowing off mini fireworks. Singing and dancing. It was great! I actually got a little teary eyed. I went into jewish bookstores, and jewish chatchky stores, and a few jewish bakeries including the one below.

I actually went to this one first and bought a bunch of stuff, then realizing i went to the wrong one. SO i went to the other one and bought some more stuff! I got apple strudel, challah, a fig thing, an apple thing, 2 kinds of cheesecake, a banana almond cake with chocolate on top, and a latke. Maybe something else also! I don't even remember! I kept walking on my tour! I eventually had to take a turn and all I saw were GAY MEN! it was like I was back home! If they only spoke english i could have made some friends!!! Anyway, I started to walk back and realized that the Ile St. Louis Island was on my way. (pictures below are before I got to the island)

On this island is the BEST ice cream place in Paris, Berthillion! So I HAD to stop ;) I had never had it before and everyone else had! So I tried coffee and caramel with sea salt! AMAZING! SO i had to take something to go. They said their newest flavor was Strawberry sorbet. SO i took it ;) I walked home and made a pitstop at Kaili's and Lauren was there also. This was at 3 pm. Mind you...I've been out walking since 9 am!!!!! It was nice to sit down! After I arrived I gave them the ice cream as my good Purim deed for the day and I shared my jewish goodies with them! They enjoyed them oh so much! I stayed there til around 5ish and then walked home. At 6 I started my studying! I worked like a mad woman til about 7:45. Took a pretty long break. Then studied more! And eventually am going to bed ;)