Both Chef and A thanked me for what I did yesterday, which was nice. Then - I put up a pot of potatoes for salad, and cut up a trayful already done. Then cut up some MONSTER onions. I mean, they were huge. Seven of them filled a gallon container - that usually takes a dozen. They were also very sweet - almost Vidalia like - and - yes, my knife was sharp, but still - not hard on the eyes. A was cutting celery for a tomato bisque, so she added a couple of handfuls, and I chopped a head of parsley to add.
My first day, it took me a long time and I got it all over the place. Today, on my last, I cut it up quickly and neatly. Yay.
We left the salad in the deep hotel pan we made it in.
Chef also had me start on what would be salmon cakes, using uncooked salmon from last night. This had been coated with bread crumbs mixed with garlic and herbs. I scraped off as much of the bread crumbs as I could, but I didn't need to be perfect. Then I sauteéed a quart of onions in oil until they were soft and added the salmon. We put in some more oil and put the whole pan into an oven to finish cooking. Later, I'd take it out, and spread the salmon onto a tray to cool. Once cool, I covered it and put it in a reach-in to be processed tomorrow into cakes.
Then I pureéd the bisque. (Bisque - onions, celery sauteéed until soft, then fresh tomatoes, water (or veg broth) and arborio rice. This is cooked until the tomatoes collapse and the rice is done.) This was done in a heavy duty blender. Okay. Blenders and me - I own one. It was a wedding present, which means I got it 18 years ago. It's still in the original packaging. Yeah - not using blenders much (other than a stick one I use fairly often.)
So. The soup is hot. Chef gives me instructions on how to use the blender - fill the top half-way. There are three controls - an on-off, a dial for the speed and another switch to go from variable to high. I'm to make sure it's set on variable, with the dial on zero, when I turn the blender on. Then I turn the dial all the way up, and then switch to high. When it's all smooth, first switch to variable, then dial all the way down, and then off.
Of course, the first time, I don't turn the dial up before I switch to high. HOT soup all over my left hand. I rinse that off, but I'm a mess - soup on my face, on my jacket and apron, on my skirt. And my hand hurts a little, too, but not that badly. After that, I was fine and I got the pot down. This was seasoned with salt, pepper and some lemon juice. Really, really nice.
I cleaned that up, made grilled cheese sandwiches and then started the Thai tomatoes - washing and quartering tomatoes, and julienning onions. I got the onions sweated and add the tomatoes, and that was it.
I gave A a couple of big hugs. Unfortunately, they're losing their beautiful kitchen (the prep kitchen is in the Art Institute of New York, which is closing), and they're also cutting their budget, so he has to let people go. This means they couldn't hire me.
Chef is giving me a letter of recommendation, however, and he wants to talk to the head of my school.
After that, I went to the café to say goodbye to F and J - and to get one last plate of my own grilled cheese sandwich and potato salad, plus F gave me a couple of strawberries. There were a lot leftover, so patrons were getting them with everything. (I have to say - they came out beautiful. I'm making ganache again.)
And that was it.