Tuesday, August 18, 2009

My moment: Le Fraisier

IP Lesson X- Le Fraisier

Le Fraisier

Le Fraisier, a popular French strawberry shortcake, is made with genoise sponge, soaked with a kirsch punch syrup, layered with mousseline cream and decorated with strawberries and topped with a layer of marzipan.’

I much prefer the Japanese style version of this cake which has a much lighter and fluffier sponge and also a less rich cream. The mousseline cream is made with crème patissiere and a whole load of butter! The French love their butter. I do too. But the only thing I could thing of while making the mousseline cream was ‘Fat, fat, fat’.

However, it gives me much gratification and joy when Ch*ef K*aren came over to my bench and announced to the entire class, ‘this is a darn good mousseline cream. Look at that..it’s beautiful’. She then proceeded to scoop some mousseline cream up onto a random slice of strawberry and put it in her mouth and gave me her ‘this is to die for’ look.

That moment was defining for me. Something hit me.
It reaffirmed my decision of taking this course.

Behind my passion of creating cakes and pastries is my joy and pride derived from witnessing people enjoying these creations.


For the past three weeks of school, I have been stuck in a rut: uninspiring days and sleepless nights. I was missing home a lot more badly than I did in the previous three months. I really hate to admit it. All I wanted to do is to leave after the intermediate course and abandon the superior course.

You see, Superior course is a huge obstacle for me. For one, it did not make sense for me. Its focus is mainly on sugar work, marzipan moulding and chocolate work which I don’t have that great an interest in. As much as I value the appearance of the product, taste has always been top priority for me. It seemed senseless to be making things you wouldn’t be eating like an entire sculpture made from marzipan or sugar.

I shan’t go on and on about that. In essence, I’m glad to say that I’ve put all these self-doubts, continuous questioning, and indecision behind me. My reasoning: At the end of December, I want to be able to say that I have fulfilled my goal of completing the entire diploma programme. That fulfilment and pride would be immeasurable; it would be priceless even though the certificate might not be so.

What’s more, I’ve come to terms that the pursuit of knowledge in all things related to food or more accurately pastries means a great deal to me. I cannot leave without understanding the intricacies behind chocolate, sugar and marzipan. I might not have much use of these particular skills, but what I do know is that the knowledge of it would be comfort to me.

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