Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Patisserie Trial Week



I decided I wanted to do this apprentice thing for a number of reasons:


Firstly, I have been wanting to go to patisserie school since time began.

Secondly, I can not afford cookery school.

 Thirdly, I want to earn some money while I work.  That's reasonable, isn't it?

Fourthly, it's my last chance at learning the art of patisserie in this way.  In France, you can enrol in a course with an apprenticeship up until the age of 25.




My weeks trial was an eye-opening experience.  It was difficult.  I knew it would be, but I think I had underestimated the kind of manual labour it would be.

During the week, I started the day preparing fruit such as chopping strawberries and arranging raspberries beautifully on tarts.  There was a Japanese girl who showed me how it was done.  I tell you,  in all due respect, never underestimate how precise and neat Japanese people are.  If my raspberry was even slightly over dipped in icing sugar or I had perchance chopped the strawberry half a millimetre the wrong way is was a goner.  Fast and Precise.  Faster, and more precise.

Of course you're thinking "any fool can chop a strawberry."  But no, no, no my friend.  This fruit chopping was summin' else.


I also did a lot of piping and decorating of 'financiers' which are similar to mini sponge cakes but slightly more dense as they contain almond flour.

I dipped hundreds of mini 'baba au rhum' in apricot glaze, iced chocolate macaroons and made salted caramel buttercream.  I iced 'gland' which are mini choux pastry with creme patissiere.

I was always so keen to learn about what the other pastry chefs were doing.  "How long did you put those eclairs in? Do you pre-bake the quiche before putting in the filling?" (The answer to question 1: 50 mins. Answer to question 2: No.)

At the end of the last day, the two pastry chefs (like bosses) told me to meet them in the bar.  We would go for a beer and discuss some serious matters.