Today was the last practical class. All we have left is one more demonstration and our practical final on Friday morning. Funny how our most hectic, uncoordinated, and confusing practical turned out well. The menu today was Parisian gnocchi from scratch (no potatoes), then the classic Duck A l'Orange. A strange combination, no?
Chef Didier Chanteford was our last practical chef, a fitting end to our Basic Cuisine lives as he critiqued us most often. For some reason, he has taken a paternal attitude with me, always checking to make sure I'm doing well, always saying I do good work. I get pats on the shoulder, and he always takes the time to talk to me.
Is it favoritism? I don't know, but he gets frustrated with other people easily and has no problems criticizing. Today, for example, he took someone's Duck A l'Orange sauce and pronounced it sh*t water. Then he pointed to mine and said that a sauce should look like that. Luckily, my fellow student took it all in stride, and I think he does very well for a person who never cooked before coming to Le Cordon Bleu (yes, there are people here who are cooking virgins!).
In any case, I was extremely proud of my duck and its glossy sauce. I'm usually quite critical of my own food, but it was one of those rare moments where I looked at my plate and thought, "Wow, maybe I can do this for a living after all!" It was a great last practical to Basic Cuisine, despite the mass chaos that happened, with most of us struggling just to interpret our notes from yesterday's demonstration.
Here's hoping this confidence carries over to my final on Friday...eeekkk!!!