Monday, July 9, 2012

Private Dining - Behind-the-Scene

Here are some behind-the-scene photos I took from the recent private dining event.

Lamb bones just out of the oven...

And into a pot of sweated mirepoix, with chicken stock and beef stock made from the previous day.

One slab of pork belly stringed and cut into half before going into the pot above.

Heating sugar to make syrup and pralines.

Almond pralines. One of the rare occasions I'm prepared to put that much sugar into my mouth.

Yiyi also prepared home made ice cream. Here, he taught me how to know when heating cream and milk in a pot is ready. With your finger, draw a line across the wooden spoon. When the cream mixture does not drip into the dividing line, that's when it's at 84 degrees Celsius and ready.

He invested in an Epicurean bread making board and swears by it.

A Southern France bread - Fougasse (which means Focus) with sundried tomatoes and kalamata olives.

The starter dough was prepared the night before, and the process which needs 3 proofs took almost all day.

Fougasse is distinguished by its slashed holes, traditionally cut in a ladder or tree shape.

And yes, unfortunately, our young friend got over-enthusiastic and sliced off some of himself on a mandolin. We can now certify him a real chef who has said his farewell to the good life of a doctor, lawyer or engineer.

Next up: Recipe of Slow Braised Pork Belly - because you asked for it!


  1. wow, ur friend was once a doc, engineer and lawyer?

    1. Given his education, that was going to be the intended life for him. But unlike everyone else in his graduate class, he has walked away from that path and chosen to learn to cook instead. Brave heart.

  2. Luan, you forgot to mention accountant (ahem). When I was in secondary school, I wanted to take up domestic science. My Mum would have none of that. "No daughter of mine is going to end up as a seamstress", Mum haughtily declared. So I meekly went into the commerce stream instead. Salute to Yiyi for chosing this career path and also to his parents for being so supportive. I wish him all the best.

    1. Thanks PH. How's life as an accountant?

    2. Well, fortunately I enjoyed the bookeeping class and here I am today. It is challenging with deadlines and other stuff but I guess every profession has its trials and tribulations. And thank goodness cooking keeps me sane.

  3. I wish I had such exposure and opportunity when I was younger... and of course the brave heart... All the best!

    1. Never too late! In fact, being the ever optimist, I might say you have better resources to create that opportunity for yourself now! Do it!


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