After an information overload and slicin’ ‘n dicin’ through week one, we enter week two of LCB Paris. This week, we look at my K.I.T., the lack of any good looking men at schoo, how to score…a good seat during a Demo class, that is. Plus deconstructing a quiche lorraine as a mean hangover cure.
[pours herself a glass of Chablis and sits at the computer]
Enter week two of the Diploma program at LCB Paris. I’ve just started the first of three courses on the road to my cuisine diploma. So far I haven’t had much time to lend to peeking and oogling my K.I.T. (photo above). This was given to us during orientation. Every student gets one during orientation and you must bring it to all your practical classes. This LCB branded Wusthof kit contains, from left to right:
- Chefs knife
- Bread knife
- Straight meat fork
- Sharpening steel
- Boning knife
- Fillet knife
- Flat spatula
- Pastry spatula
- Tasting utensils (large spoon, small spoon and fork)
- Pastry crimper
- Trussing needle
- Apple corer
- Melon baller
- Pairing knife
- Plastic spoon
- Pastry bag + tips
- Pastry brush
- Plastic scraper
- Meat thermometer
- Rubber to secure your cutting board (you have to buy this on your own)
- Vegetable peeler
- Bottle opener
- Kitchen shears
- Peeling knife
- Tefal electronic scale
- Tupperware (x2)
- 2 mixing bowls
- Wine key
Week 2 K.I.T. Awards:
Most popular: Chefs knife + scraper (tie)
Most likely to kill: Trussing needle
Least popular: Melon baller
Biggest brown-noser: LCB branded pastry bag
A lovely kit she is. All items are durable and a sure thing to keep in your kitchen forever. Everyone is told to mark each item in his/her kit as things get misplaced all the time. I am not ready to de-face K.I.T. yet.
Now that we’ve concluded knife kit porn, we move onto getting our learn on in class. Week 2 brings us “Commonly Used Doughs, Parts 1 and 2” where we learn how to roll puff pastry (which is what makes up about 90% of all French pastry including my arch nemesis, the beloved croissant), make a pie crust (or short pastry dough), pasta dough and pissaladiere dough. All fun things as I like getting my hands dirty.
Puff pastry is QUITE the feat of rolling, resting, rolling in a SLAB of high fat butter and then rolling and turning and folding and turning and rolling and folding and turning and refrigerating and rolling and folding and turning…get it? Ya. Not for the faint hearted nor for those watching their cholesterol. That thing is basically rolled butter with some flour.
In our Demo’s, we watched my favorite cheffie make dishes with all these common doughs: various quiches, stuffed canneloni and pissaladiere. In our practical classes we made the pastry dough, a pissaladiere with tomatoes and anchovies and my favorite, quiche lorraine. Who needs a bacon, egg and cheese on a roll to wash down the memories (or lack thereof) of last nights vodka & soda bender when you have the supreme quiche lorraine? Plus, the “egg” is really a custard, which means heavy cream + egg. Mmmm hmmm. Nothing better to not remember last night by eh?
Speaking of benders, many of my girlfriends (read: every single one of them) have asked whether there are any cute boys in school and the sad answer is, well, no. First of all, the majority of students are women and the men are just not exactly that Johnny Iuzzini, Eric Ripert or Tom Colicchio type of swarthy man. They are more like younger boys and if you’re into that kinda thing then I suppose you could garner a few dates. I’ll just stick to the hotness I see at Hotel Costes.
In any case, LCB certainly throws you right into the basics of cuisine. The chef’s don’t miss a beat and every action, every ingredient and every cut is explained so one can really understand the method behind each dish and begin to cultivate a language and encyclopedia of techniques to carry them through the most advanced dish. I tell ya, I’m very grateful for those years spent helping my mom in the kitchen, she def has skills and taught me a lot about the basics which has prepped me pretty well, so far.
Up next: Week 3 – Drunken chefs, the crab massacre and more dough plus soups