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Surface to Mass Ratio

Posted By Kelly On January 18, 2008 @ 10:49 am In Culinary School | 2 Comments

Well, I survived the first night of Laminated Dough, Pâte à Choux, Donuts, and Fritters.  Better than survived.  I did pretty well.  The class was busy and Chef did his level best to keep us working.  He does not tolerate slackers.  I love that. 

A few observations:

1.  I love pâte à choux.  I love making it, piping it, baking it, and best of all eating it.  Yummm!  I also love that I was piping it right with out instruction from Chef, and when I taught one of my team mates how to pipe it Chef had everyone watch her because her technique was so very good.  Awesome!!! 

2.  Gougères are like crack.  If you have not had them you should.  If you do not know what a gougère is, it is pâte à choux with cheese mixed into the dough.  Last night we used Gruyere cheese, but most hard cheeses would work.  I would like to try them with cheddar and red pepper, or jack and jalapeno.  I imagine them as part of a brunch, or served at a cocktail party, sitting proudly on a platter waiting to be devoured.  I promised my husband I would make these for him this weekend since I told him how good they were.  And, lucky me, they are dead simple to make! 

3.  Puff pastry is not really that hard.  I don’t know why I get all antsy-in-my-pantsy about it.  This weekend I am going to make some puff pastry for pan au chocolat and to put up in the freezer.  (I shall have to take pictures for you all to drool over!)

4.  I have pretty good instincts about people, and when I get an impression about someone I am not often wrong.  I am sad to report that I was right regarding my impression about someone in my class.  I shall not say who.  I know that this person shall drive me crazy before the end of the semester. 

5.  When things are long and thin, as opposed to short and fat, they defrost faster.  Surface to mass ratio.  Ask me how many times I heard that last night.

6.  I love my team this semester.   Love them!

7.  We got finished at 9:50pm last night.  Let us hope this is the trend for this class.  You all know how much I love staying late!

8.  OMG!!  Stars won last night against the San Jose Sharks!  (Yes, not a bakery observation but the game was on while I was in class so I think that counts.)

I am going to get back to posting pictures in the gallery, and I think I may rearrange the pictures and give the albumbs better, more descriptive titles.  Currently they are cryptic.  I can do better. 

For your Friday enjoyment … 

I may start doing this every Friday for fun.  Here is the BEST hot fudge sauce ever.  Bar none.  Of course, it is based Nigella Lawson’s recipe but I have made a few minor changes to suit my taste.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge Sauce

3/4 cup heavy cream
4 oz dark chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter 
3 tablespoons golden syrup or light corn syrup
Chocolate Ice Cream
Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Whipped Cream, from a can

1. Put the cream, chopped chocolate, peanut butter, and golden syrup into a saucepan and put it on medium heat to melt, stirring occasionally. Once smooth the sauce is ready, about 2 to 4 minutes.

2. Get out four sundae glasses and put a scoop of chocolate and then a scoop of vanilla ice cream in them.

3. Pour over some chocolate peanut butter fudge sauce and top with whipped cream.

4. Devour.

Serves 6 to 8 (or 4 of you are REALLY hungry).

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