Midterm Test  中間試験


(Here's my handy job as I promised. )


We weren't allowed to ask each other or the chef any questions on this special day. However, it was just a normal day for me. I normally don't ask others questions. Not because I'm so good I don't need help but rather my Japanese isn't good.


We were graded on 5 categories: Presentation, Technique, Taste, Hygiene, and Organization. I did pretty well, I got 8, 8, 7.5, 8, and 7.5 respectively. Top of the class.

# by ekwok | 2006-11-18 05:36 | Le Cordon Bleu

Izu Wellness Approach イズ・ウェルネス・アプローチ

Yesterday, I went to Ohito in Shizuoka with Nami and her family. We visited some relatives and then at about 8:00, we went to a hot spring. We stayed there for just 50 minutes but it was great!


It had the standard; hot bath, cold bath, and stinky sulphur bath. It also had a sauna and steam sauna. It also had a bath with water coming out of a bamboo pipe about 2 meters up. It's supposed to massage your muscles or make you bald if you decide to foolishly let the water hit your head.


Some interesting points would be that the sauna had "towel shorts" for you to wrap around your privates while you lie around. The best and most interesting thing by far is "Doctor Fish!" (That's a name used by Oedo Onsen in Tokyo but I'll use it here for this case too.)


"Doctor Fish" is a bath filled with tepid water and about 250 small little fish. The idea is that you stick your feet into the water and let the fish eat you alive...well, eat any dead skin or diseased skin at least. It's a little disconcerting to see your whole foot is engulfed by small fish ravenously gnawing away at your toes and feet. It's also ticklish but you get used to it after awhile. Think of seeing these black little tendrils coming out of your feet and wiggling around. It was like some scenes in Princess Mononoke.


I left my feet in there for about 15 minutes and at the end, my feet felt amazingly smooth and nice. It felt like I got a great foot scrub. I recommend "Doctor Fish."

# by ekwok | 2006-11-14 01:48 | Travel within Japan

Recently... 最近。。。

I peaked at 9 and for the past couple of times cooking, I got sevens. I need to control my salt.


I'm sad.


But I'm going to try harder. Next time 8, 8 or more! Yeah!


Next thursday I'm making a ham and cheese souffle, stuffed tomatoes, and grilled steak topped with anchovie butter.

# by ekwok | 2006-10-29 01:31 | Le Cordon Bleu

Pork Chops and Mustard-Pickles Sauce

For the past two weeks now, I've been cooking and presenting my dishes to the chef/instructor every Thursday and Friday. And my marks have been okay but nothing to get too excited about.


Well, yesterday, I made pork chops and he must have liked that because he gave me a 9 out of 10. A nine! I was shocked.


He looked at the plate and said the parsley was nice and very fine. Then he tasted my potato puree then my pork chops with sauce and then my sauce. He was silent during the whole time so I was nervous. Then he says, "Great." "Delicious." "Great job." I was relieved and happy.


I almost died.


Later on the assistant came over to tell that I was the first and only one to get a nine in the class.


After tasting, the chef asked me some questions about whether I ate a lot of French food or if I cooked everyday, etc. I said no to all questions.


After scoring, I brought my plate back to my station and I didn't know it but the chef was following me. And then to my surprise, he asked a couple students to see my plate. With that, other students also came over in order to see what's happening. Then they asked to taste my plate. Then everyone use their index finger, poked my sauce and tasted it.


I was happy.

# by ekwok | 2006-10-21 00:46 | Le Cordon Bleu

I browned butter. バターを少し焦がしてしました。

I browned my butter.


This was the first time for me to cook in such a nice kitchen. There were some excellent pieces of equipment and it was well equipped with all the necessary things cooks would need.


Today was a simple potage with bacon and paysanne de legumes, which means vegetables cut into 1 cm by 1 cm chips. It was a little intensive since I was trying to get everything perfect but I was very happy to be in the kitchen. However...


I browned my butter. I completely melted some butter in a pot with high heat before I added my bacon, cut into lardon shapes and before I knew it, the butter browned. The chef came by and saw that I had browned my butter and said, "Kwok-san, don't brown the butter. Write it down in your notes. Cook it slowly, slowly."


Finally, when I presented my soup to him, he said it was delicious. But the color of soup was darker than that of the other students. And if he didn't see that I had browned my butter, I could have gotten a higher score. I got 7 out of 10.


However, things weren't so bad. He was impressed when I got my water boiling at the very beginning. I knew that boiling water always takes a lot time (all those times cooking for the Singles group paid off) so it's good to get that going first. At first, I thought I was in trouble because he shouted to the class, "Who's water is this?" Then the guy next to me, pointed at me and said, "Him." And then chef said something along the lines, "Great! Getting the water going first." I was happy.

# by ekwok | 2006-10-02 01:23 | Le Cordon Bleu


「自家製酵母」のパン と言う本の通りに酵母をつくっています。



# by ekwok | 2006-09-19 00:24 | Food and Cookery





# by ekwok | 2006-09-13 00:11