Most of the dishes we make in school use classic French technique and thus have French names like Bourride Setoise. I’m in level 5 right now and my class is separated into groups of 4 that rotate to different stations in the restaurant kitchen every four days. Today was day 3 of my second rotation in Entremetier (awn-truh-met-yay). This is the station that prepares vegetables, soups, starches and eggs. We specifically prepare a daily “chef’s special” (today is the Bourride from one of our instructors) and also have to come up with a vegetarian special for the day (we chose lasagna today). It’s fun when we can come up with recipes on our own – forces us to be creative and work collaboratively.
Above is the Bourride Setoise, right before it went out to a customer. It’s basically a bouillabaisse made with monkfish and littleneck clams. Under the fish are sauteed leeks, and also on the plate are cocotte potatoes (that’s the shape they’re carved into) and the clams. The sauce is made with a saffron-infused fumet (fumet=fish stock) and an aioli. The garnish on the plate is a chiffonade of basil. This dish is served with baguette croutons spread with the aioli, as shown below.
We also came up with our own dish – a vegetarian option for the day. My team member Warren suggested a tofu lasagna. Tofu can be kind of intimidating, but when you’re not eating meat and need to get your protein, it is a nice alternative. And you can flavor it with whatever else you’re cooking with. We used a soft silken tofu in the cheese layer of the lasagna and mixed it with ricotta, parmesan and sauteed spinach and onions. We made the marinara sauce and garnished the plate with roasted heirloom cherry tomatoes, aged balsamic and extra virgin olive oil. It ended up being a beautiful dish – tasted great too!
The rest of my day and night was spent working on my menu project. I finished up making and photographing my last dish today. I’ll have lots of recipes and pictures to share once my project is turned in next week! Tomorrow after school I’m heading to Harwichport, MA (in Cape Cod) for a long weekend at Shamapalooza!