First exam!

So today was fairly terrifying... Haha, for me anyway. I had my first real exam today.... and I was really, really, really nervous about having to be graded purely on performance. The morning started off with the "cook tech" portion. I had to make a perfect pot of fluffy brown rice, a pot of beans for salad (meaning they cannot be split), and broccoli for crudite (bite size florets that have been blanched for a veggie platter). This part went OK. I got full points for everything except my rice... 4 points taken off on that because it was a little wet. Considering I have never made a decent pot of rice in my life, I'm happy that it came out as good as it did!

The second part of the morning was much more nerve-racking. I had to produce a long list of Japanese and French cuts on various vegetables. Then my instructor came around WITH A RULER and made copious amounts of notes... not giving a single mention of what my final score might be. Anyway, I think I did all right... She seemed to be impressed with my French cuts (perfect 1/8" cubes! sadistic frenchmen....), and her critiques were pretty minor. I am keeping my hopes high!

Now we are beginning to take a look at menu planning, which is definitely interesting. Just looking at what needs to be considered when creating a menu that is completely balanced... I mean, it seems so simple. BUT there is so much more to consider that I hadn't really thought about. We have a series of three lectures on this, and I've only sat through one. Today we talked about the food pyramid that the USDA uses and what its goal is... and whether is actually achieves that goal. But tomorrow we are going to get into the 5 phases, Macrobiotic philosophy, color, texture, flavor balancing... I'm excited to have a little bit more clarity on how to plan meals in a professional way.

Anyway, I am off to Western Mass for the weekend starting tomorrow night... so the blog will be quiet for a few days! Enjoy the long weekend!!!