Monday, November 2, 2009

First day of school!

Today was the first day of class at the Culinary Academy of Austin. Not a whole lot to report since the first few weeks primarily cover safety and cleanliness. I did get my uniform though! I really like the white chef's jacket (though it's just a tad big on me) and neckerchief (MUST learn to tie a Windsor knot!), but the baggy, houndstooth-patterned pants and chunky shoes are far from flattering. Oh well, I'll just try to look in the mirror from the waist up only.

The photo below shows the pastry kitchen where the pastry arts students learn to bake tasty treats (there is a larger kitchen in the adjacent room for the culinary classes). This photo was taken during the CAA Halloween open house, so no, it doesn't normally have balloons and silly ghosts hanging about. This is where I'll be spending most of the next six months with ten other future bakers. So far all of the other students seem really nice and vary in age and experience. It's a good, diverse mix of ladies, yes, all ladies.

But before we hit the kitchen, we have to hit the books for about 2-3 weeks. We have a food safety exam next Tuesday. It's been a while since I've had to study for an exam, so it's a little strange trying to get back into study mode post-college. Most of the information is pretty common sense , but it's the numerical information like time/temperatures/measurements that I have trouble retaining. Stupid number-resistant brain! It sounds like most of the math that I'll be involved with will be relatively basic so I should be okay. Also, reading about all of the foodborne pathogens —while interesting —kind of makes me nervous about eating anything that I didn't see prepared.

I'm still helping out at Paige's Bakehouse on Fridays since I don't have class those days. It will be great to have a place to apply my new knowledge and maybe learn more about those subjects from her. I'm forever grateful that Paige was nice enough to mentor me through my career change. I can't wait to see how this evolves over the next few months. I'll be sure to keep my readers posted though!

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