October 1, 2011

entree station

Next was the daunting entree station, where I was alone with the work of producing 120 portions of something. Well, usually starch station (in charge of making the accompanying rice/pasta/potato/etc.) would help me out and we would partner up to do both things, but there was this one day where I roasted 120 portions of chicken by myself, and if it weren't for the fire alarm that disrupted everything, I wouldn't have gotten the chicken out in time for cafeteria lunch service. Sadly that was one of the days I forgot to bring my camera, so I don't have evidence of that catastrophe/accomplishment.

frying fish

Other things we did in entree station were, for example, frying 120 portions of fish (I did the flouring of the fish filets, which was fun - slap, flip and pat down, a rhythm you could get a groove into).

filet of sole with beurre meunière

What distinguishes a culinary school cafeteria from a regular one would be the little touches - for the fried fish, it was the beurre meunière Chef Ogden piped with a pastry bag - butter we flavored with parsley, lemon and black pepper. Sadly I don't think anybody but us got to see the piped rosettes - the butter melted soon after meeting the fish (a match made in heaven).

tamale pie

The one thing I super enjoyed in entree station was the making of tamale pie, otherwise known as tamale filling + cheese sandwiched between slabs of cornbread. The cornbread dough had to be hand-spread to cover the bottom and top of the hotel pan, and I don't know what it is, but working with dough just makes me happy.

tamale pie baked

It's a kind of respite from the hustle that is everything else.

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