Lesson 3- Basic Creams

Demo was tuesday and practical was today. I have no pictures of the things we made because they would be boring pictures. In demo, Chef Herve showed us how to make:

crème chantilly (sweetened whipped cream)
*crème patissière (pastry cream)
*crème anglaise
crème bavaroise (bavarian cream)
*crème d’amandes (almond cream)
**meringue (french, swiss, italian)
crème au beurre (french buttercream)
*ganache

In practical we only had to make the ones with the stars beside it. We made italian meringue twice. Basically you whip egg whites and cream of tartar to soft peaks (which I have been overwhipping my entire life! who knew.) and then you pour a sugar syrup at softball stage into the egg whites as you are whipping with your balloon whisk. You have to keep whipping until the bowl is body temperature, and that’s how you know it’s ready. For testing the sugar, we had to use our fingers. We dipped our fingers into the pot of boiling sugar and into an ice bowl to see if it was ready. A few people (one in particular) complained in demo that they weren’t going to do it. They must have been really scared they would get burnt or something, when in reality you don’t even feel the heat of the sugar one tiny bit! It’s actually fun to dip your fingers into the pot of sugar. But at the end of whipping all the meringue your arms are very sore and tired.

In the beginning of the class I was a little bit behind everyone because I didn’t write down all my mise en place and I kept worrying that I was forgetting something. Plus it took forever for the sugar to reach softball stage, so I prepped my ingredients for the pastry cream. But by the time my meringue, pastry cream and crème anglaise were done I was caught up and even further ahead than most people. A lot of people in class over cooked their crème anglaise. I think mine was okay, but I did forget to add the vanilla! A pretty important part.

For this practical we had a different chef instructor. Chef Thierry. I like him! He barely speaks any english but he always has a smile on his face and is very encouraging. He was always saying “allez allez allez!” to make us work faster, especially when we were beating the meringue. Unfortunately he is leaving to teach in Korea soon, so I won’t have him as my instructor anymore.

When I was done making all of my creams there was still lots of time left in class, so I was told to practice piping with the st. honoré tip with the meringue. It was hard to get a hang of, even though I asked Chef Thierry for a demonstration. At first he told me I was making it too small and then after a while he said they were okay. Hopefully we have Chef Herve again for next practical so I can ask him how to do it, and maybe he can explain it a little bit better and offer more instruction.

In the next class, we are taking what we learned in all 3 lessons so far and combining them to make a lemon tart! I am excited. So is everyone else in the house. Apparently it’s a very good tart!  The almond cream we made in class today was saved by the Chef so we can use it in the next practical instead of having to make it then. I hope mine turns out well!

Butter used: 60gms
Total: 560gms

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