If you ever had a romanticized view of culinary school that involved simply showing up, putting on a cute outfit and baking cakes all day, then whooooooaa nelly, don’t sign up! It’s intense. Seriously, intense. I probably have more reading to do now than in university (or perhaps it’s because this is actually interesting so I’m actually reading it, rather than waiting till mid-term time and pulling all-nighters to catch up!). I’m in class for 20hours a week, and have probably 18-20 hours of homework a week. But it’s fun for the most part. More on homework in next post…
For all of you who guessed a specific hat style, well, I still don’t really have an answer! A few people still wear the hats like when they came out of the plastic (style #1). Most people tend to wear them high in front and slouchy in the back (style #2) but one guy has been wearing his high, a la style #3. So if we’re going to pick a winner, we’ll go with #2. As for me, I’m in group #2.
This week has flown by – I’m amazed it is already Wednesday! The week started at 8am on Monday for orientation. It wasn’t anything all that exciting, mostly because it was at the school’s main campus (ie. not at the culinary school), and was a lot of the generic “here’s how to use the library” type info.
Pastry school is just around the corner!
Last Thursday, I had a ‘pre-registration’ evening at culinary school. I was quite excited as I thought i might meet some new classmates etc., but because I will be attending the Art Institute, all of the people I met were starting programs like Graphic Design, Fashion, etc. No other future pastry chefs in the 20min I was there.
Here’s what I did accomplish:
1. I got my photo taken for my ID and it’s half decent. I tend to have a way of appearing like a chipmunk in those ultra-digital photos (my costco card photo is horrific) so this was a landmark moment for me. At the table where you pick up your ID, they had long silver chains, and those ID card clippy attachments. The guy handed me my ID and said “you’ll want to choose a clip, so you don’t end up dunking your ID in chocolate.” Hehehe I’m going to love this program!
2. I got my schedule! It’s still a prelim version, but here’s my schedule as of today:
Tuesday: 9am – 12:00pm Sanitation and Safety (lecture class – topic is fairly self explanatory)
Wednesday: 7am (!!!) – 12:00pm Fundamentals (kitchen class – not pastry specific.) Every future chef, pastry or regular, needs a general base level of french cooking technique. So yes, I’ll be trussing chickens, making stocks and learning the 14 ways of cutting a potato at 7:00am. Pastry-specific classes start in the 2nd quarter)
Thursday: 7am – 12:00pm Fundamentals again. (yup – 10 class hours of this class over two days!)
Friday: 8am – 12:00pm Concepts and Theories ( very similar to Fundamentals. In fact, I really don’t know what the difference is.
12:30pm – 3:00pm Dimensions of Culinary ( lecture class about the industry as a whole; career opportunities; communication skills; etc
Really, I’m just excited to get my chef whites, my knife roll, and do orientation! March 31 is when it all begins…
The paint is still drying (or what would we say in the pastry world – the ganache is still setting?) but let’s call this day #1 in my foray into pastry blogging. In just three short weeks, I’ll be handed my chef whites, my knife kit, and a hefty tuition bill for a year-long adventure at culinary school. It’s the biggest change I’ve ever made in my (rather short) 26-years, and I’m beyond excited. I have a degree in Communications, and have spent all of my post-grad years in a variety of corporate communications and public relations posts. But there’s something to be said for following your passions, and after hearing just one too many sob-stories about missed opportunities, lost loves, and ‘if only…” tales, I decided to go after it head on and explore something totally different, totally crazy, and something that just excites me to the core. Nothing scares me more than thinking I’ll be sitting in my rocking chair in 60 years, wishing that I’d Just. Tried. it.
So here goes. I’ve loved to bake and create all kinds of delicious, not-so-healthy treats since I was a kid. My sister and I used to fight over who would get to bake birthday cakes for our parents. I always read the dessert menu first to see if it’s worth saving room for. So it’s in my blood, and I can’t help it. (Luckily I don’t care all that much about eating the stuff – just a taste to see how it turns out, but the fun is in the process. I’m counting on my friends to be the good people they are, and consume my homework on my behalf). I decided to create this blog for a few reasons. For my friends, family, and colleagues who I’m leaving behind, drooling at their desks as they wonder what delicious adventures I’m getting myself into. For the other random people out there, who I can say I was one of, hungry for information about the inner-workings of culinary school. I was one of them, when I was trying to make The Big Decision, reading accounts of others experiences so I had something more subjective out there than just brochures from the admissions office. And I’m also doing this for me. It’s going to be an incredible year, and this will be a good place to document how it all goes.