I survived week one, y’all!
That sounds dramatic. It wasn’t hard to survive. Because it was fun. SO fun! Over the last couple of months as I have told people that I was starting culinary school, I had SO many people say to me “you are so lucky, that has always been a dream of mine”. And to be totally honest, I do feel so #blessed to be able to do this. I have been dreaming of going to culinary school since college, and the fact that I am in the midst of it is kinda super surreal!
But that’s also not to say that I wasn’t nervous.
MY GOSH I was nervous! I had orientation all day on Sunday where they showed us where our classes were, we got our uniforms and other typical orientation spiels. The head chef of the program came and spoke to us, and when I left, I was feeling pretty good. Fast forward a few hours later when I went to bed, I woke up every single hour, nervous and worried I was going to oversleep my 5:15 alarm.
When 5:15 finally did come around, I think I could have thrown up. We have talked on here about how change is not easy for me. I woke up feeling this change in full force- I was so anxious, I was crying and telling Brian I didn’t want to go and crying some more about how stupid I felt in my uniform. I was nervous I didn’t have everything I needed and that my uniform wasn’t ironed perfectly enough. And I kept envisioning all my classmates being way more advanced culinarians than myself. But finally by 6am I pulled myself together, chugged some coffee and headed out the door.
So how class works is this:
We have labs Monday-Thursday from 7-1, and that time is spent between the classroom and the kitchen. Labs only run for 9 days and then you switch and go onto your next lab. For class everyday you have to be in full uniform: checkered chef pants, an ironed white chef coat, your name tag, a chef hat, a hairnet in my case, white socks without any logos on them, and black kitchen shoes. No makeup, no nail polish, no earrings, no wedding rings. And when you enter the kitchen you put on your apron and side towels. And they mean business with all of this.
In the classroom and in the kitchen when your chef (professor) asks a question or makes a statement, you reply with “yes chef”. It’s legit like straight out of a cooking movie.
My first lab is protein fabrication, aka essentially butchery class. And surprisingly, it’s actually pretty cool!
Since we are working with raw meat for extended periods of time, we work in a kitchen that is kept at 41 degrees and it is freakin freezing in there! In this freezing room we learned how to fabricate a chicken into 8 parts, how to truss a chicken (tie it up to roast), how to fabricate an entire pork loin, how to turn a veal top round into veal scaloppini, and how to french lamb racks. That’s a lotta meat.
When I leave class I look like I murdered someone, after throwing around a bunch of meat all day.
All of these cuts and meats were really cool to learn, but I will most likely only ever use the chicken fabrication and chicken trussing in my real life. But hey, if you need some lamb racks frenched, I gotchu.
We also did tastings of oil, vinegar, salt and chocolate, so that we are able to identify them when we are using them. Aaaand lastly, this class also covers menu costing and butcher yields (finding out how much of the product is actually “sellable” product) which we do when we go back up to the classroom to defrost. It’s a whole lot of information packed into one class!
Lemme know what else you want to hear about school in the next posts!
Thanks for reading, frands! Season the day 🙂