baker, sweets

Getting the Bubbles

June 1, 2007

Today was a BUSY day. I had planned to make the puddings listed on the lunch menu (rice, butterscotch, chocolate), ten dozen peanut butter cookies, the crust for the key lime bars, and and a months worth of scones to freeze. That plan was partially wiped out because I received orders for a breakfast catering, three dessert trays, and dessert for a executive lunch.

It’s hard to me to believe that I’m really a chef. We ran out of whole milk yesterday … (I know, what kind of world am I living in?) and all I had at my disposal were 2%, skim, heavy cream, and half and half. We expected an order today, but a customer called requesting the butterscotch pudding for a luncheon and the recipe required whole milk. I asked the sous chef and she said she would have tried using the half and half, but she said I would know better.

Um … okay. I’m still working on the self-confidence guys.

So I took the half of the required milk needed and added heavy cream and half in half. The world did not spin off its axis because I deviated from the recipe. True I could have just used the 2%, but I think my customers would notice a difference in the creaminess. Well, anyway I asked my official butterscotch taste tester, LaShawn, what she thought and she said she noticed a difference and it was great before and now its fantastic. LaShawn said I should continue doing it that way. I hope I remember what exactly I did.

Secondly plating a dessert tray I was in a crazy rush because Tom the catering delivery person had to leave with the order NOW. I usually like to take my time for the aesthetics, but since that was impossible I did it without making it look thrown together. When I asked Tom for his opinion he replied: “I like it, but you are the chef.”

Me??????? I guess I am. I still can’t believe I went from pastry arts student to pastry chef so quickly. At the risk of sound pessimistic and cynical I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. Or at least to wake up!

Okay enough about my self doubts … Although today was a hectic day one thing that did help was that an energy drink company promotional van arrived and gave us two crates of liquid power. Half of the back of house stood outside on the loading dock smoking cigarettes and chugging Red Monster. Sugar, caffeine, and nicotine isn’t a good mix for anyone welding sharp instruments.

Later at one point LaShawn turned to me as she was looking for pasta in dry storage and said: “Damn! I’m getting the bubbles!” Between gasps of hysterical laughter I grabbed my boxes of brown sugar and hightailed it out of there. If you are going to break wind dry storage is better than a hot kitchen.

On Friday’s our cafe serves bubble tea. I first made it because the sous chef who usually makes it, but was off one Friday and asked me to do it. I continued doing so because she is usually running around doing other things and she always helps me when I need it. I can’t say I like bubble tea … even when someone else makes it. Straight is too damn sweet and I think chai is repulsive. The little tapioca pearls are really cute though.

Also my feet were killing me. I’m determined to buy new chef shoes tomorrow … and a pedicure.

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