This post is part of a 9-part series related to my completion of the Pro Series 1 professional culinary arts course at The Culinary Center of Kansas City with Chef Richard McPeake. This course changed my cooking world! An introductory post can be found here.
The finale of the Pro Series 1 class was a dinner party, catered by the 15 students (minus my teammate Libby who was on a tropical vacation, not that any of us were jealous…), with the help of Chef Richard, and our helpers Chef Larry and Chef Max, and those awesome ladies that washed all our dishes! We received the menu and recipes in advance, but did not know what we would be assigned to cook. Each team named a captain (I must have fidgeted just wrong, because my team picked me) and that person drew to see what our dishes would be. I was also responsible for working with Chef throughout the night to coordinate our items and ask questions, since only the captains were allowed to speak to him. Before class, Kathran and I said the only thing we DIDN’T want to draw was the blackened tilapia, because neither of us had made anything like it. So I fished into the bowl of paper slips and drew…the Blackened Tilapia and the Bananas Foster. (I’ll let you know now, the tilapia was not difficult at all and was, in Team 3’s humble opinion, the star of the show.) It was one busy, and occasionally frantic, 90 minutes but we successfully prepared a buffet for 48. And because our guests paid to join us, I suppose that would make us professional chefs now, wouldn’t it?