Saturday, October 3, 2009

Salmon, Bass, Fennel, Sweet Potatoes, and Quinoa

First off, it's Saturday. This post will be about yesterday's class, but let me start with this. I never thought I'd see the day when I wake up at 2:30 PM after a fun night of bowling and drinking, and think to myself, "I really want eggs Benedict." Well, it happened. And it was delicious. Also, when I make Hollandaise for myself, I am always adding a ton of Tabasco, because it is perfection. I still have some left if someone wants to come finish it off before it breaks!

Grilled salmon, Bass Vin Blanc, Fennel Au Gratin, Glazed Sweet Potatoes, Quinoa Salad with Bell Peppers (4 out of 5)
The sweet potatoes and the salmon were my babies on this day. I love sweet potatoes so I just had to take the lead on them. The glaze turned out really well, and I made them Dauphinoise style, so they were really thin, and I layered them with the glaze. They turned out really well, but I guess the chefs got a piece that I cut too thick or something, because one chef said some of them were undercooked. Bah.

The salmon was served with Choron sauce, which is Bearnaise with a bit of tomato paste mixed in. Bearnaise is Hollandaise with shallots, tarragon, and vinegar mixed in. I didn't make the sauce, but I did grill the salmon (this is related to why I wanted to practice my Hollandaise today). It was delicious, by the way. The bass vin blanc was nice; it was rolled up and stuffed with a salmon forcemeat mixture, and served with a derivative of Veloute sauce.

The quinoa salad was okay, but it was overcooked and underseasoned (we figured once we'd overcooked it, screw it) so that's why we got the 4 instead of a 5, I think. We'd made it back in Foundations II, so it wasn't that thrilling anyway. The fennel au gratin was awesome, and we were all surprised eating it, because fennel is usually really strong. We braised the fennel, then threw it in the oven covered with Parmesan cheese and baked it. I should have known that nothing can be bad braised and covered in Parmesan.

I like the kitchen we're working in now because there are actual plates to serve our dishes on! We had little gratin dishes, big serving platters, everything. It makes it so much nicer to look at, and way less cheesy than serving on crappy foam plates.

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