Top four things I learned in culinary school:
1. Making puff pastry once was enough for me
Eating puff pastry is God’s way of giving us a sneak peek of what heaven is going to be like. Whether sweet or savory, the flakey layers of buttery bliss make my taste buds sing. However, making puff pastry is a different story. It’s tedious, time-consuming and takes hours (sometimes even days) to make.
Although, with that being said, I truly appreciate those of you who do take the time to make this lovely pastry so ones like me can enjoy the fruits of your labor. Thank you for that.
2. Just because it’s French doesn’t mean it tastes good
Haute cuisine (or classic French cuisine) is world-renowned for refined cooking styles, intense technique and close attention to detail. We love popular classics such as Coq au Vin and Boeuf Bourguignon, but there were a couple of things I came across that I hope to forget about one day. Tripe is one of them. Tripe is essentially cow (or other animals) intestines that taste like, pardon my Spanish, caca.
3. Butter, Butter, Butter
No need to explain.
4. Even a blonde chick can cook
I’m not going to lie; my first day of culinary school was disastrous. I was the youngest in my classes, I had never used a chef’s knife before and I thought ‘mise en place’ was the name of a European department store. I held back tears in my first class as I nearly chopped off my finger, severely over salted my soup and undercooked my vegetables and then harshly burnt my tongue on what tasted like a mouthful of the Dead Sea with some raw carrots and onions thrown in. At that moment I learned my first French phrase: “Pas bon, Nathalie,” which translates to “It’s not good, Natalie.”
I went home that night wanting never to return. However, the next day I pushed my nerves aside and pulled up my checkered pants to prove that this chick could cook too. All while having the thrill of a lifetime!