Monday, May 6, 2013

Roasted Vegetables and Mouthgasms!

No lie, I really wanted to title this "Roasted Veggies and Oral Orgasms" but I figured I'd get the wrong kind of traffic.

Anyway, I happen to have pretty awesome news. I think it's pretty obvious that I love cooking. I don't always love the eating part, but the idea of cooking and trying new methods and generally being in a kitchen is overly appealing to me.

So after waffling around on this for forever, I finally decided to follow my dream and do what I want to do for a living. I scheduled a tour of the French Culinary Institute and also put out my resume to a few places, explaining that I wanted to learn, had no professional experience, but God damn it did I want this bad.

I toured the school. I fell in love. Deeply, passionately in love. But then I saw the cost, and in all honesty I don't want the debt. I had gotten an e-mail the same day I sent out my "for God's sake, hire me" e-mails about meeting with some people about it. So I went to one that was disastrous, and got pretty discouraged. That lasted for all of ten minutes before I sucked it up and put my foot forward to the next place.

And holy crap, I had the greatest interview ever. The chef was realistic, reminding me that this is stressful, I'll get yelled at, I won't have a life and forget about dating. I told him I know that, I can take being yelled at, I already don't have a life and I don't care about dating. He asked me to come back for dinner service.

It was kinda grueling. I cleaned oysters, which I figured I'd be doing grunt work the entire night (which I didn't care about), then I chopped potatoes for brunch the next day, and learned how to shuck oysters. After refraining from making a reference as to my ability to shuck all night long I was called upstairs. For service. In a kitchen where people can see me. I was PUMPED. It was even better because I got to wear the cook outfit and I looked adorable.

I was put on the salad/apps station, and the chef who was running it was super patient and taught me how to do everything without getting frustrated with me. His patience was incredible especially when I'd forget to add extra sauce or how much to coat chicken with, etc. But eventually I took care of certain dishes that came up, leaving him able to focus on learning himself (this was his second night at this place though he'd been in the industry for a long time). I had a great time. I was soaked, tired, achey and I have a blister on my hand from beating the crap out of ice to crush it for the oyster plates. SO. MUCH. FUN.

Chef asked me how I liked it, and after gushing like a normal person would after a successful first date, he told me he'd take me on and teach me. We'd work on my knife skills, my speed, getting me ready for service and up to par. For now it's an internship, but he'll open a spot for me at the end if I survive. I lost it internally: I get to be taught by a chef how to do all this stuff. Holy crap!

So that is my exciting news, and I can't wait to get started. The only downfall is that I need to buy crocs - because I'm seriously going to ruin my only good pair of sneakers and they're not non-slip.

ANYWAY. Food!

I had an unexpected early day today (I really should pay more attention to my schedule) so I came home and cooked myself some noms. After raiding the veggie bin last week I wanted to roast up some in the toaster oven and have them over rice. But my protein intake has been awful, so I decided to add an egg in there and it. was. heavenly.

"But where's the lamb SAUCE?!"

It's super simple. Just veggies roasted up nicely, tossed over quick rice and topped with an egg. But the best part?

No one gets me like you do, egg yolk.

Total mouthgasm am I right? Of course I am. LOOK AT THAT. Whenever I break the yolk I hear Gordon Ramsay in my head: "It's the customer's privilege to break the yolk!"

Gordon Ramsay is in my head a lot actually. I should probably stop watching Kitchen Nightmares so much.

Anyway, I can't believe I'm even posting a method at the end, but it's easy stuff.

Method
Set your toaster oven to 425, and toss cut up veggies with EVOO, salt and pepper. Arrange them in one layer on some foil and put them in the toaster oven for about 20-25 minutes, depending on how you sliced your veggies and how done you'd like them. Also, if you're making 'softer' veggies, you'll need less time. I had parsnips on there so you know those take a bit longer.

Learn to embrace Minute Rice. Honestly. Until I get another rice cooker this stuff makes me beyond happy. Just make a bag and have it ready on the plate.

Once the veggies are soft and delicious and you haven't eaten all of them as a taste test ("Taste everything!" Ramsay says. Oh God, help me) then toss them over the rice.

Since making an egg over easy takes all of one minute I usually just do it fresh at the end instead of having it ready. Coat a skillet with cooking spray, get the pan all warmed up and crack the egg into it. I add extra sea salt and pepper to the egg and cook away. Once the egg white hardens a bit, flip it. Don't break the yolk or Gordon will be so mad. It's true. He'll come to your house and have a freak out. Anyway, it only takes about 20-30 seconds on the other side before it's ready. Flip it back, place it over your veggies and tell your mouth it's in for a good time.

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