Modern Culinary Masters-- Ming Tsai

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I cannot express enough how great it is to have Chef Chris as our chef instructor this module (no, I'm not sucking up... I'm too scared to tell him about my blog hehe). I took a moment during class today to just observe the chaos and professionalism in our class. We have definitely come a long way in the past few months!

We began today's class with knife skills. I definitely needed the practice! We each minced a couple of shallots and cloves of garlic. When I say mince, I mean MINCE... these had to be chopped until they could not be chopped any more. We were even given knife skills homework for tonight. I'm saving it for the morning... I have to mince 5 cloves of garlic, 2 shallots, and small dice 4 carrots (1/4 x 1/4 x 1/4 inch cubes).

After knife skills and a quick review of today's menu, we got to work on the recipes (provided by Master Chef, Ming Tsai).

I started out by preparing an Asian Pear Chutney for our duck recipe. This chutney was spicy and sweet.. I loved it with the duck! The mixture contained, onions, ginger, sambal oelek, rice wine vinegar, apple cider, and Asian pears.

After that, I helped prep the fennel orzo salad, the shrimp stir-fry and helped saute the duck breasts. Just like yesterday, everything turned out beautiful and tasty! We were all scrambling during the last minutes to get our dishes on the table. It is seriously like a food network show when Chef is counting down the seconds and we're all putting our final touches on the presentation. Every minute is so worth it when we are all able to stand back and see all of the hard work we put into each and every dish. Then we EAT and it is DEFINITELY worth it!

Time for pictures....These first 3 dishes are the ones my group worked on:
(Achiote Duck Breasts with Asian Pear Chutney, Spiced Pecans, and Red Chile Oil)

(Spicy Shrimp with Mangoes and Snow Pea Salad)

(Citrus Herbal Tea-Rubbed Halibut with Orange-Fennel Orzo Salad)

(PEI Mussels and Chinese Sausage with Garlic-Ginger-Scallion Stir Fry Sauce)

(Blue Ginger Alaskan Butterfish with Soba Noodle Sushi)

(Traditional Mandarin Fried Rice)

(Oyster Corn Fritters with Two-Vinegar Emulsion and Spicy Mayonnaise)

(Napa Slaw)
(Oven Roasted Szechwan Squab with Steamed Scallion-Lemon Rice)

(Chicken-Rice Noodle Stir-Fry)

Everybody watch Chopped tonight--Chef Erica will be competing (our chef instructor from module 3!)

I'll be spending the rest of the night brainstorming menu ideas for our graduation! I'm working with Kim to create a very original and creative menu for the big day! We're meeting tomorrow before class to get our ideas down on paper for Chef Chris.


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