Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Pommes Rissolee / I Started Culinary School
I know, I know... It's been a while since my last post. Luckily there's a good reason for that and it's called culinary school. I had been going back and forth in my mind about whether I would actually enroll, but in the end I decided to take a leap of faith and just go for it. I started a couple of weeks ago and it's been going pretty well, although this full-time job plus part-time culinary student gig is not for the faint of heart/stomach/feet (you very rarely get to sit). I'm attending the French Culinary Institute and was able to start at level 2 because of the class I took previously. However, as my earlier course was technically "recreational" I needed to take a test to make sure I actually learned what I was supposed to. This led to the dish featured here: pommes rissolee (they're basically glorified french fries if you ask me). I needed to practice my tournage and thought I should at least have a delicious treat when I was done.
To prepare, you begin by parboiling (partial-boiling) the potatoes in water so that they are just cooked through. This is done by placing the cut up potatoes in a pan and covering them with cold water. Then bring the water to a boil and lower to a simmer until done. Next you drain the spuds and allow them to dry out - placing them in the empty hot pan helps to speed up this process. After they are dry, you then fry them in the oil of your choosing until golden, brown, and delicious. Finally, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and any herbs you think might go well and toss the whole pan in the oven along with a pat of butter to finish the dish off. Drain on paper towels and get ready for your trip to carb county.
If you're not in culinary school or don't want to waste good potato scraps, then don't bother cutting the potatoes into these shapes. Also, the last step of finishing them in the oven isn't completely necessary either, but I'll leave that decision up to you.