Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Day 15 - The Incredible, Edible Egg

Well today was the first day of eggs. Now I like eggs. I enjoy eating all sorts of eggs. But in the last few years eggs have decided they don’t love me. So I don’t eat them much anymore. But tonight I had to cook them, along with a chicken consommé.

First up – Boiled Eggs, 3 ways – hard, medium and soft. This really wasn’t that hard, but I don’t boil eggs the way they told us to. I put mine in cold water, bring to boil, turn off heat and let them sit. Well here you bring the eggs to room temperature, add to boiling water and time them. Hard for 12 minutes, medium 5 minutes and soft 3 minutes. This is a misnomer as the eggs may or may not be room temp, the water may be almost boiling but not quite. So I did mine hard 13.5 minutes, medium 5.5 minutes and soft 3.5 minutes and was told they were great.

Next it’s time get the consommé going. This is a very interesting dish. Looking at the mess in the pot you’d never think this was one of the purest and clearest broths in the world. Just remember – in the memorable words of Chef Richarson “Do not F with the raft!!!!” Yes that needed 4 exclamation marks. She was very serious about this. And good thing too, because, if you mess it you’ll break it and ruin your consommé and you will not have time to start over.

Weeeee it’s time for hollandaise again…..ARrrrRGGggGG!! It’s time to make it AGAIN. Yes my hollandaise broke. It was the first time and I’m sure it won’t be the last. (let’s just hope it doesn’t do it on finals) We need this buttery concoction for our Eggs Benedict and Eggs Florentine. It’s 9:00…can I do it? Can I pull this out? YES! (thanks Abbie!!!) She was so nice to come pour my clarified butter while I whipped like mad. Sauce is done, let’s see my bacon is slightly brown and keeping warm, spinach is sautéed, muffins are warm…yes I do believe it’s time to poach those eggs! *heavy sigh* I’m not a big poacher…but its gotta be done. I’ve done this numerous times at home, never had great luck and was never graded on them at home. Get the water hot, add the vinegar….make sure it’s hot, put eggs into poaching dish…gently pour into the hot water…woot!! Very little fly aways! SCORE! My egg dishes and second batch of hollandaise made it. But wait...there’s a catch...good job on poaching them but we don’t be doing them that way for the buffet. We’ll be doing the ladle method. Yeah I wondered what that was too. Seems they take a BIG pot of water, get it boiling, add a bit vinegar. Then you take a ladle, spray it with non-stick cooking spray, crack your egg into the ladle and very slowly lower your egg into the pot and let the ladle hang on the side for about 3 minutes. (note – be sure to use towel or hotpad when removing ladle as it’s very hot)

We also made 3-2-1 dough that we’ll bake Tuesday or Wednesday evening for our quiches. (Why the name 3-2-1? Well you have 3 parts flour to 2 parts cold butter to 1 part ice water – I feel so educated. So explain why my dough was more like 3 parts flour, 2 parts butter to ¼ part ice water? But chef said it was done…so done it is)

Tomorrow we’re making…yes you guessed it – Eggs! It’s eggactly what I was eggspecting.


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