Tuesday, 5 October 2010

The lamb lies down on Broadway

Enough of the Peter Gabriel era Genesis, the lamb was back and this time he was angry. Yes, as predicted in yeaterday's post all four kitchens laboured under the task of extracting the last ounce of goodness from our recently departed wooly friend. I made one of the many Moussakas that featured on the lunch menu along with Shepherds pie. This was atonement for plating Ballycotton Shrimp with home made Mayonnaise and Brown Bread. Luckily the flow rate of oil into the waiting amalgam of white wine vinegar, salt, Dijon mustard and egg yolk proved appropriate and 10 minutes orso f whisking produced a velvety emulsion coloured deep yellow by the organic free range yolks and a taste that would have shamed a well known brand.

So on to the lamb. At first sight the grey granules that awaited me totally confirmed my suspicions about lamb.

Judicious application of onions, garlic, nutmeg and fresh tomatoes improved the look considerable and sandwiched between layers of courgette and aubergine before being smothered in a creamy cheesy sauce it looked quite good. What the lamb mix tasted like I do not know. Being unable to taste it I seasoned as I thought reasonable and used two freelance tasters to advise. Beautiful one commented and very good the other. The custard I could taste and that was pretty good.

Then just half an hour before lunch things changed. I suddenly discvered that I was the Supervisor for lunch. BAsically this entails advising the other duty people that they are duty people and ensuring that the tables are relayed at the end of lunch. It also entails making sufficient soft whipped cream for 40+ by hand. 2 pints of the bovine world's finest and a dislocated wrist later the accompaniment to dessert was complete, not that I got any dessert as we had other things to do.

At 1:30 we were paraded out into the garden for the school photo. It is of course many years since I was at school, indeed Mr Gainsborough came and painted the school picture with us holding a pose for some three days- well he had 800 to draw. This was simpler, involving only arrangement by altitude and a digital camera but it started me thinking.

 My only experience of school photos is that which my grandaughter gives a s a hristmas present to her grandparents. This is usually accompanied by a DVD with a title like "My Skateboard Safari" in which, an obviously green-screened, six year old slides easily across the savannah, mountains and desert waving unconvincingly at later to be added flora and fauna. This adds around £20 to mum and dad's shopping list and thanks to pester power is a major seller.

I scoured the plan for the rest f the week but could see no obvious slot for a camera crew to catch us unawares and later produce "My first Michelin Star" though now that the idea is in the public domain it may happen.

The afternoon demo was largely mexican though we also learned to convert apples to jelly and the art of sorbet making. This latter demo producing question of the day; "How does the machine know whether it is making ice cream or sorbet?"

Mercifully the demo ended shortly after and we escaped to get our heating fixed, do some shopping and have a drink in a four star hotel.

Tomorrow lectures starting with wine and a promise of six to taste between 9 and 1. Blogging may be a little slurr if indeed possible.

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