Thursday, March 15, 2012

How to make Parmentier Soup

Lesson 2: Turning Vegetables

Trust the French to develop a culinary module out of turning vegetables, which means just that, turning vegetables so that you pare them to even, oval shapes, usually with 6 or seven sides. I thought I would fail miserably at the task, my knife skills being nil, or at best, suspect. To my surprise, my chef instructor thought me to be a natural turner (yes, Tina Turner). Studying the potatoes I have turned, she noted the confident strokes and the absence of ridges. When done with the potatoes, we moved on to carrots. We also did a refresher of the last lesson by making paysannes and juliennes of leeks, which went into the making of a wonderful potato and leek soup that we enjoyed after class.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

How to cook ratatouille Alain-Ducasse-style

Knife skills at Enderun

Paper bags with apron, hair net and toque

For weeks, I had been looking forward to the start of my culinary course at Enderun.

Despite a late Friday night, I made it to the school at 8:45 a.m. the following day. I had just enough time to chat with Alexandra, another student, before the start of class. She’s an expat who has been based in the Philippines for close to five years. She was there for just one session. Her main objective was to gather material for an article she was writing for the expat community. It was from her that I learned we were sharpening our knife skills (of which I had none) that day.


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