The big freeze continues, the other day I noticed, as we passed, that Swan Lake was frozen over and flocks of incoming avian visitors were performing unintended acrobatics on landing. Bit like us really. The anticipation and excitement of the Wine exam has passed. Now we face the practical on Wednesday and three written exams on Friday then as they say around here "Sin e"- that's it.
But there's still work to be done. Today was a bit curates egg - good in parts. Skate wing proved no issue whatever. The Filleting knife cut through the sandpaper skin without resistance and, covered in a court bouillon, the skate poached happily.
Mary Jo's Chocolates proved more of a challenge. I want to know who Mary Jo is so that I can punch her lights out. On paper not too hard. Make a ganache, chill it and cover in chocolate. So Chocolate melted in Cream and cooled, Grand Marnier added and chilled.
Finally I got sufficient to put up a tasting plate though the iced mint decoration looked better than the chocolate.
Shortly before I went on a homicidal revenge mission I had to adopt best behaviour. Chef Factor (Irish TV series) were filming at Ballymaloe and had chosen our kitchen to do the background shots and fillers. From Rambo I turned to Peppa Pinc (Peppa Pig to non Welsh speakers) acting reasonably and exuding bonhomie and love for my fellow man. By the time that I went to lunch the red mist had raised a little and I postponed horrible and slow deaths for a while.
The Demo was entertaining and covered ice cream several ways, Pork En Croute, seventy things to do with Smoked Salmon and Spring Rolls. Tomorrow I shall be cooking Chocolate Ice Cream in Hand Made Chocolate Cups, and Vietnamese Spring Rolls. It will also be the last time that I cook on a Friday and will mark the end of the last full week of cooking.
I leave you with a few photos of the kind of food that I will try to recreate tomorrow.