I know, I know... It's been awhile since my last post but in these last weeks I have been extremely busy with my Christmas orders, event and my last week at Le Cordon Bleu... Now I'm back in Italy for few weeks of break so I can finally update you about my last days at LCB.
At the time that I am writing this words, I am finally graduated and I got my Diplome de Patisserie completed!! And I couldn't be any happier than how I actually feel!
The ceremony has been wonderful and for the first time we could see all the Chefs in a different way (and outift!!)... The location was really nice and amazingly decorated for Christmas! The food was soooooo good and the atmosphere was really chilled. After few speeches we all got our coveted Diploma and medal and the party has started!!
But let's take few steps back to my last day in the kitchen/school...
In the first week of December we had our exams, both practical and theory and few days before we had to submit a portfolio consisting in a project, reflective evaluation, etc.. But I don't want to annoy you with these technical things!!
The practical exam this term was quite different: for the first time we had to create our own entremet and 2 identical creative plated desserts. This been said, we were not 100% free (ugh!) because we were given an ingredients list with specific quantities alllowed and some restrictions on the components of the cake...
So, considering all these things, that's what I have decided to make.
For my entremet I chose to make:
- sablé breton crisp layer, orange flavored
- internal passion fruit & vanilla crémeux
- coconut mousse
- dark chocolate glaze
- japanese sponge, orange flavored
- dark chocolate & dessicated coconut decorations
For my plated dessert (unfortunately I don't have any pictures of it because we were not allowed to take them), I used some of the preparations I made for the entremet plus something new.
I have a diagram here to show you the main piece, plus I piped some dark chocolate in an abstract and random way on a side of the plate and decorated it with caramel sauce drops and fresh mango cubes.
I was quite happy at the end of the practical (it lasted 5 hours!!), even if I was not totally satisfied because I could have done better a lot of things!!
The theory exam was not a surprise: the usual 40 multiple choice questions + 2 open ones. Not a problem!
Now that everything is over and that I am 100% entitled to call myself a "Pastry Chef", I have a mix of feelings and emotions.
Coming at Le Cordon Bleu was for me a way to improve in something that has always been my passion and that I've then tried to turn into a job. My life before moving to London and starting my course was completely different, as you may already know. In Italy, I was a criminal lawyer and even though I liked it, I’ve always known that it was not my real path. The decision of taking this leap of faith, changing my career and coming to LCB was not accepted by almost all the people that I love and that are closer to me. And even if this was discouraging, I still did it because for the first time, I wanted to do something for me, something that I really wanted and not what other persons wanted me to do.
With these feelings, I had great expectations and I knew I wanted to take the most I could out of this experience. My goal has always been to improve my skills to the very best level but also to understand how my personality could fit in a different job sector, with different characteristics. Before coming at LCB, I had never worked in team or in couple, because the job I use to do didn’t required it. I can say, now, that working with/in a good team is priceless. Not only because it can be more efficient, less tiring, more organized but also because the satisfaction and the happiness of a job well done is bigger when shared. I am grateful I have learnt this.
Of course I am happy of all the techniques and theoretical aspects that I was taught and satisfied of my achievements, even if I am a perfectionist and so I always think I could do better. I had the chance to meet some amazing teaching Chefs and fantastic people from all around the world, sharing my same passion!
I have loved each single demos or practicals – some more than others – but all of them. Each day has been a new discovery and a new challenge and despite the fatigue or bad moments in the kitchen (it can happen!!), I have always come home happy with what I had done.
My journey at LCB has been for me one of the best experience in my life, for what I have learnt, for the human side of it and for what it has meant to me. I will keep a lot of good memories of these 9 months, and I know that this is priceless.
So even if now a part of me is so happy and excited for what's next, another one is pretty sad that this is over now. But after all, that's how life is and all the good things come to an end...
I know it was a long post, but I had sooooo many things I wanted to tell you!! Time to go now, but remember: you can't buy happiness but you can buy a cake. And it's kinda the same thing!!