Sunday, September 30, 2012

understand, accept, grow

I must say I have been horrible at blogging since I've been on the East Coast.... My dearest apologies...


I am going on a year of being in DC, Metro Area.... Let me tell you I have learned alot through all the trials and tribulations.

You can ask me what my favorite dish is to cook, I would now tell you everything...
You can ask me what culinary school I went to, I would tell you I didn't finish...
You can ask me what my posistion is, I would tell you a part of the culinary team...
You can ask me what my future plans are, I would tell you your nuts for asking any culinarian that question.... p.s. I would never open my own restaurant on my own dime...

Over the past "almost" year, I've discovered part of me... A side of me I didn't know.. The side that set's my own goals and dosent compete with people around me, I learn from them... I compete with myself... You are only as good as you can push your own self to be...I learn from every area of the country club I work at every day. Granted I cannot respect everyone I work with, however the ones I do, I take notes... I write novels on what they teach me. It's inspirational.. I had an awesome mentor when I first moved here Tim Elliott, and Greg Sharpe. Tim, taught me to toughen up and take some shit. He made me want to cry, move home, give up... Yet, I didn't he pushed me to strengthen as a person... Chef Greg, The one who brought me here; He has taught me to push myself to get out there, kick ass, and make it look easy.. Not only that he taught me how to understand, accept, and grow... Most important Greg, taught me that keeping food simple is key.... you can't run before you walk... Regardless salt and pepper are the key.... Gabino, a Guatamalen older man I work with; well, he is like a dad to me, he teaches, and if you dont listen, or appreciate he'll make it known... After the first few months we bumped heads, yet, now we are best friends. Travis Weiss, He has taught me I'm on my way... He's taught me to get a backbone and be confident in everything I cook... Not to question it, he's taught me how to utalize alot more around the kitchen, and not to hold back.
If I continued to list the people who have inspired me on the east coast, the list would never end... Most importantly I'd like to thank the dishwashers... Without them we wouldnt have a running operational kitchen...

I've learned there are so many words for what I have learned its hard to explain how meaningful, and how inspired I get, Im sure my eyes light up with excitment when I learn something new.

I'll expand on the topic soon...

p.s. How does Califronia in 3 months sound?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Sausage stuffed Artichokes

Here's a simple recipie I threw together for an appetizer. Easy, and Delicious. Can be altered to what you have in your own kitchen.

3 cans artichoke bottoms
   - Slice Bottom to help it sit easier and save the trim you cut off, makes a nice topper for artichoke.
   - Marinate all in an oil blended with garlic and herbs.
   -Grill off

Italian Sausage stuffing
  • Red Pepper, Yellow Pepper, Tomato (Dice)
    • Toss add Cilantro for a little extra pizaz
    • (This gets tossed into sausage after cooked)
  • Sausage (Cook)
    • Garlic
    • Onion
    • S&P to taste
  • Goat Cheese
  • Parmesan
  • Panko Bread Crumbs
    • Toss Cheese, and panko in cooked sausage
  • Roasted Red Pepper for color

  1. Place Roasted Red Pepper on artichoke bottom
  2. Make small ball of sausage place on top of Roasted Red Pepper
  3. top with Artichoke you trimmed off
  4. Place bamboo stick or tooth pick to hold together
  5. Throw in oven until the cheese is melty
Bam, Delic little snack

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Chilled Avacado Soup

So, I had to make a chilled soup for #150 people today... I had a recipie but, really.... who need's one... This was the first chilled soup I have made so I did my reasearch. It turned out incredibly awesome and beautifully garnished.  Note to readers hard to record actualy measurement's when I just go by taste and what I have learned. However I can calculate them, just contact me.
Avacado Chilled Soup

  • Red Onion (Dice*)
  • Garlic (Mince*)
  • Cilantro (Mince*)
  • Chicken Stock or Vegetable Stock
  • Lemon Juice (Fresh)
  • Lime Zest
  • Cumin
  • Paprika
  • Chili Pepper (Optional)
  • S&P to taste
  • Avacado (Core, out of skin)
  1. Prep all ingredients (Mise en place)
  2. Puree, in blender or with robot coupe: Red Onion, Garlic, Cilantro, Stock, Lemon Juice, Lime Zest, Pepper (Optional) (*If you have a blender or robot coupe just rough chop, the blender will take care of the major buisness)
  3. Add Avacado --> Then puree again
  4. Add Water or Stock (Thin's the soup)
  5. Add seasoning to taste
  6. (I like to run through a "china cap" That is fine, yet if at home, no worries not neccesary if your cooking for you and your friends.

  • Roma Tomato (Bruniose)
  • Yellow Pepper (Bruniose)
  • Red Onion (Bruniose)
  • Cilantro (Mince, Just a lil' bit)
  • Lime Zest (Just a lil' bit)
    • Mix together
    • Add a little S&P just because...
  • Crostini , or homeade Crutons (Roasted and golden for garnish as well)
  • Sour Cream mixed with Heavy Cream to squille' across the top of dish under Veg and Crostini.

Friday, May 18, 2012

yaa know

6 months later....

Well, Id say it's time for an update. My laptop recently bit the dust which made blogging slightly difficult.

So a little reflection time is neccesary....

I've been on the east coast officially 6 months now, technically the end of my "internship". Am I leaving, No. Have I progressed? Absolutley.

Someone asked me at the start of my internship what I saw myself doing down the road as in where I wanted to end up. I was unable to answer the question at the time but now as I have seen how far I have come I now think I have an answer..... As to where I want to end up as in exact location is un-defined... Yet, I do now when and where I end up I know I want to be the best chef I can be and show to people that with can-do attitude you can get the places you want to be in life regardless if you have schooling or not. Im currently working for a chef that I really look up to. The accomplishments they have made is exactly what  I want for myself. I want the ACF awards, and the books of memories, and having a network of other culinarians who have been along for the journey.

Getting through this internship was defenitly not easy, for it was litterally the hardest thing I have been through yet. Not having family in this state also made it difficult yet them being a phone call away daily put me at ease and hearing the words "Im proud of you" makes life perfect. Those simple words are what pushed me to work harder each and every day. As I still struggle in some areas in the kitchen which I am personally aware and want to strengthen. I have strengthened personally gotten a grasp on things I never thought were improbable. It's crazy 6 months later I can look at a Banquet Order board and see parties for 200+ and feel comfortable in preperation for them. Im getting a glimpse of what mass preperation is like. I have seen the in's and out's of what the more buisness side of the Club life is like as well. Getting the opportunity to learn about pricing, inventory, and much more is a crucical part of running any buisness. Staying on budget is key. I've learned to really stay calm in the jist of the absolute chaotic times and remember to just fix whatever needs fixed and not sit around and question what to do... On the other side of things I personally feel I need to still get more practice when it comes to fabrication, sauces, and time managment. Occasionally I feel some tasks take to long, yet a little reminder always pop's in my head.... "Julia, this is not an all day project" as a chef from a precious restraunt would say... Speed/ and accuracy have improved but still need work... Breaking down protien's can  be simple but my skills are lacking when it comes to portioning. As I progress I remember I have plenty of time to learn so keep on truckin.... The last goal of mine is to get into competion and master it... It's a skill that takes a strong culinarian, one with determination and willingness to feel comfortable in such event... I just want to keep learning to say the least... Im young and my goal is to be the best I can be which will never have an end..... I have a passion for cooking to say the least :)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Time to get in gear

I've come to realize I'm not in the same mind frame cooking here as I was in Missouri at either of the restraunt's I worked at. I wonder why.... what can I do to fix this... When I work the line here at the country club Im nervous and it dosent make since I've never felt so uncomfotable on any line. I know how to sear fish I know how to make risotto. Why is it so difficult now? It's like I almost let myself forget the things I have learned. When prepping for banquets I don't understand some things. I feel as if I come to ask to many questions sometimes. I know my basic's I am learning alot here don't get me wrong. Yet, I am loosing the feeling that my work is great or accomplished. I look at all the equipment in the kitchen and I am finally fimiliar with the combi oven and greatful to have something so awesome. The fact I can proof bread dough in it just rocks. Yet, I see the stock pot which could fit 5 of me in it, its that big. I came to realize I need to better understand the equipment I am working with and if a stock is brewing how long will it take in the stock pot before I need to strain it.. Well how long for that size proportion. We also have a large tilt skillet, I want to understand all of what I can make in it. I need to get a grasp on things and have better knowledge of my surrondings. I feel so un-accomplished like I need to step up my game. I was once told by a chef to always one up the person next to you.. I need to apply that to the country club. I work hard but how can I work harder. Im going on 3+ months here and I'm finally getting accustomed to the people I work around. I say it's time for me to step on the gas pedal and really get in gear... I am passionate about what I do now I just need to take it to the next level.