Making a lamb burger and frites on Monday morning was all very well, but by midday I smelt like a Friday night at the chip shop. Beef drippings might make for the perfect chip, but the not-so-fragrant waft of the deep fryer leaves a lot to be desired.
This week I’m down the other end of the school working in Kitchen 2. So a new view, new partner Will and new teacher Sally.
My lamb burger was pretty delicious. You can’t really see it here, but it had a slightly middle eastern vibe to it.
The pattie was made with softened and slightly sweet onion, plenty of freshly ground cumin and coriander and served on a bun with homemade relish and a banana and cardamom raita. Oh and the other thing that makes burgers delicious? This should come as no surprise here, but it’s the fat content. The target fat content to make a burger good? 20%. Leaner meats (venison, chicken etc) need to have something like pork mixed in with them, otherwise the burger will be dry, crumbly and tasteless.
Although I remember doing a cooking course in Istanbul with mum a few years ago. We asked why their Turkish meatballs tasted so good and were told by the teacher they contained about 50% fat! So 20% seems… reasonable?!
The afternoon’s demo was one of my favourites so far; we were doing eggs. Omelettes of every shape and size, terrines and frittata. Things were definitely getting eggy. Billed by Darina as the ultimate fast food, after seeing her make an omelette and then taste it, I couldn’t help but agree.
A classic French omelette must be one of the fastest and most delicious things ever. Once you’ve got your eggs whisked and your pan hot, 30-45 seconds later it’s on your (warm of course) plate, ready to be eaten. 30-45 seconds? (Basically I have been doing it wrong my whole lift) It was honestly an enlightenment! And I am totally converted. (Look out if you are ever invited over to mine for brunch. There will be no surprises as to what you are getting)
Some important rules to ensure success:
The eggs must be organic and fresh. The pan must be hot hot hot. The butter must be clarified, otherwise it will burn. Your warm plate must ready at your side; stepping away to get it will mean your eggs overcook. Part way through cooking you must change your wrist action, so you can flip it over and out easily out of the pan. Omelettes must be eaten immediately.
As well as the classic omelette we saw frittatas with mushroom or goats cheese and roasted tomatoes. We tasted a puffy souffle omelette (made by whisking the eggs whites separately) or an omelette Arnold Bennet (with smoked haddock and cheese) and an amazing Provencal layered terrine.
I’m going to leave you with a picture of my own omelette efforts from Tuesday morning.
And a short video of the amazing Julia Child sharing her views on the amazing omelette. 8.35 mins you won’t regret.