Friday, September 24, 2010

Block 5: Week 1 - Demos

We started Block 5 this week down in the butcher shop. This week was simply demonstrations by the chef, so it was a little bit slow, but still pretty interesting.

On Monday and Tuesday, chef broke down a whole side of beef, the front quarter on Monday and the hind quarter on Tuesday. On Wednesday, chef broke down a side of veal. He cut the side into the primal cuts, and then continued processing the meat into purchasable cuts. We did get to participate after the demonstrations by helping to clean up small pieces of meat that would eventually be used for ground beef or veal.

We learned about a side of pork on Thursday, and we each got to break down and debone a pork loin. Today, chef cut up a whole lamb, and also demonstrated deboning a turkey, and we each deboned our own turkey afterwards. I definitely will find this month challenging as I haven't worked with meat all that much (A tends to do a lot more of the meat cooking at home) and deboning is pretty new to me. I am excited about learning a lot this month though.

This week, I also started back at Rogers Arena. I worked Monday night at an event for 3,000 people and made spinach salad with beets, gooseberries, and goat cheese. I also worked a pre-season hockey game in my new kitchen. It's pretty similar to BBC from last season in that it's a buffet and there are action stations. I worked on a station and made prawns and scallops with a Thai curry cream sauce garnished with water chestnuts, snow peas, and toasted sesame seeds. This kitchen is on the 200 level, and the view from the action station is pretty amazing. When we aren't busy, I can watch the game, which is great.

I was at the hotel yesterday, and it was somewhat painful. Me and another guy were assigned to clean baby carrots. Peeling and cleaning them took forever, so we spent almost the entire shift on the same task. We did get to see how they make rice pilaf for a party of 200 in the tilt skillet, and we also helped set up the hot food for the buffet dinner, so that was good to see.

Groups haven't been decided for the rest of the month, so we don't know what stations we will be on in class yet. But the three stations are poultry and fish, beef, and lamb and pork. Should be an interesting month.

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