Sunday, July 8, 2007

Knowledge is Power Day 1

Something that I will do daily (well, as daily as possible), is list terms, recipes and other bits of knowledge that I am learning. I will do my best to list at least one restaurant term, one mixed drink recipe, one wine term or fact and one basic cooking term, recipe or fact. If nothing else, this will serve to hold myself accountable for learning daily, and may become a source for others that find themselves in similar circumstances.

Restaurant Term:
Tasting menu ----- (French name, menu degustation) It gives customers a chance to try a larger number of chef’s creations. Menu may feature 5-6 or 10-12 individual courses serve in small portions. Change daily depending on chef choices and availability of ingredients.

Mixed Drink Recipe:
Bloody Mary Recipe - served in Highball glass
1 1/2 ounce vodka
tomato juice to 3/4 full
small splash lemon juice
dash Worcestershire sauce
dash Tobasco sauce (more for a hotter drink)
shake of salt and pepper
1/4 teaspoon horesradish (optional)
garnish witha lime or (for the more ambitious and vegetably inclined) a celery stick

Shake all of these ingredients with ice, then strain into a glass filled with ice
  • ("Bloody" drinkers have diverse tastes, so you should ask if the drinker would like the drink hot, and alter accordingly with Tabasco sauce. There are about as many different recipes for Bloody Marys as there are drinkers. Some prefer gin to vodka, and any number of interesting ingredients may be added or substituted to make that perfect, customized Bloody Mary. You can experiment with clam juice, dill, basil, garlic, curry powder, or barbecue sauce. Feel free to be creative; you may be the bartender who dicovers the perfect combination! as found in Bartending 101: The Basics of Mixology, published in 2005 by St. Martin's Griffen)

Wine Terms/Knowledge:

Chardonnay Shar-don-ay

  • Usual wine style - Dry white
  • Intensity - Medium to strong
  • Aromas/Flavors - Ripe fruit, apples, melon
  • Acidity - Medium
  • Texture - Smooth, buttery
  • Tannin - Very low; usually none
  • Wood - Medium to high
  • Foods - Lobster, shrimp, scallops, salmon, swordfish, halibut, bass, chicken, turkey, squash
  • Cooking styles - Saute, gril, roast
  • Principle regions - Chablis and Cote de Beaune in Burgundy (France); southern France; Calfornia; Oregon; New York; Australia; New Zealand; South Africa

Note: Chardonnay is also often used as a blending component in the production of fine sparkling winse in placed like Champagne (France), North America, Italy, New Zealand, and Australia. Producers of these sparkling wines like to use Chardonnay grown in a cold climate because it provides the finished sparkling wine with a lemony, apple character.

Cooking Term:

Bernaise Sauce:

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 cup dry white wine or vermouth
2 tablespoons tarragon leaves, chopped
2 shallots, minced
3 egg yolks
1/3 cup butter
salt and pepper

  1. Combine vinegar, wine, shallots and tarragon in 2-cup glass measure.
  2. Microwave, uncovered, at high for 1 to 2 minutes or until boiling.
  3. Set aside to cool to lukewarm.
  4. Strain mixture into small bowl; whisk in egg yolks.
  5. In 2-cup glass measure or similar microwaveable bowl, melt butter at medium 40 to 60 seconds.
  6. Do not boil.
  7. Whisk egg yolk mixture into butter.
  8. Microwave, uncovered, at medium 30 to 90 seconds.
  9. Whisk every 15 seconds.
  10. Cook only until mixture starts to thicken.
  11. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

That should do it for today! I will post tomorrow after my first day of work. It is suppossed to be orientation; I think we will be learning the basics about the B Hotel.

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