My first week taking the Professional Cook course at Rouxbe was fantastic. I spent the first part of the week getting oriented and learning a few fundamentals such as food safety, and knife work. For instance, did you know rice can have a pathogen on it that is killed during cooking, but who’s spores can survive and regenerate if left in the danger zone for too long? I didn’t, and I love rice. Now I think about it as my food cools before going in the refrigerator.
Much of the week was spent focused on knife work. I’ve cut more celery than ever. Not wanting to waste 2 heads of celery that had been thinly sliced, I found a recipe for celery soup. I honestly didn’t know what to think when I saw the recipe, but this stuff was delicious! The dill is spot on and matched perfectly with a touch of sour cream.
I had to practice dicing a few different types of vegetables, such as tomatoes, onions, and peppers. This time, and from what I can tell from the few recipes I’ve seen, there is an emphasis on not wasting food. The ingredients were added to couscous, which made a great side for some pan seared true cod.
This was all on the weekend, so I had plenty of time to cook and work on my classwork. Deanna asked for salmon and poached eggs for breakfast Sunday, so that’s what I made. Frankly, this is the prettiest poached egg I’ve ever made. I used a technique from Jamie Oliver where you put the egg in a small bowl lined with plastic wrap and tie it up. Make sure to brush the plastic wrap with oil first. 3-5 minutes in just under boiling water, with the heat turned off, and the eggs come out great. Of 4, this was the nicest. I’ll try the technique again, but next time use a bit more oil on the plastic wrap.
For the rest of the day, Sunday, I focused on knife cuts. I had to practice and show the variation of cuts on a carrot.
Not wasting the cut carrots and scraps, I had to show something useful with the material. I made carrot bread.
I finished the day practicing on another recipe for minestrone.
That led to salad week. I didn’t get pictures of the goat cheese, walnut, and spinach salad. It was delicious, with a warmed vinaigrette tossed in. I did have to do a salad for submission, and it now being Tuesday, I wanted to something to go with my shrimp tacos. I decided on an orange and avocado salad, with an orange vinaigrette made from the juice of the sectioned orange.
So that was the end of week 1! It was very busy. Sunday was pretty exhausting. Since it is somewhat go at your own pace, I’m not entirely sure whether I am sprinting or marathoning at the moment. I’ve completed more tasks than most, but not all. They aren’t kidding when they say it’s about 15 hours a week. That is right on track with what I did last week.
Complete immersion. That’s the goal for the next 6 months and I’m loving it so far.