Last October, having made the decision to attend culinary school, I sat in on a class who was just about to finish their program. They were on a “market basket” lesson where each was given a duck breast and charged to create a full plated meal around it. I then sat with Chef Chris at the end of the class period and sampled 13 different takes on duck breast, being mostly impressed with what people had come up with. Some components I still remember – one student’s butternut squash gnocchi, another’s crispy polenta square with honey.
Today was that lesson for us. Back during the practical for module 3 I described how several of my fellow classmates went out of bounds when it seemed as though we were given a bit of free reign when it came to preparing the components on that exam. Today, however, there were no bounds, other than to take 3 scallops, cook them golden brown, and plate them with starch, vegetable, and sauce components.
I did a little bit of homework on it this weekend, at least looking up some sauce ideas. For some reason that to me was the most puzzling component, since scallops are so mild in flavor. Anyway, I’m pleased with what I came up with, which was sautéed scallops with roasted zucchini, carrot-thyme ravioli, and a white-wine butter sauce.
Wednesday we get to do this again, only this time with mystery proteins, and also with the additional challenge to consider plating in a more composed way, other than keeping all the components separate.