Reflections on the final week of Cook’s Certificate by Will P.
We’ve now all completed our 6 week cook’s certificate course and I’m totally blown away by just how much I’ve learnt.
In the final week we had an amazing day on chocolate making with Jon from Mast Brothers teaching us the art of tempering and ganache making – two fundamental skills required to make chocolate. This was by far the messiest day, but definitely one of my favourites! I especially loved learning to make a delicious praline made from hazelnuts and sugar and I was so impressed by the volume and quality of what I had achieved. I think I will be making these for everyone’s Christmas presents!
On Tuesday we had a fascinating day learning all about sustainability. This is a very important subject given the Cookery Schools sustainability ethos – they have the highest possible sustainability rating from the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) and they really go the extra mile to source locally, organically and to help in the community to spread the message of sustainable and healthy eating. It’s a really important thing to know about and it really opened my eyes in terms of how much is up to us, the consumer, when it comes to making sustainable purchasing decisions, not to mention how if only big business was taking sustainability as seriously as Cookery School we’d live in a much better world.
Wednesday was a very challenging day – we all had to prepare a 3 course meal to feed four people on a budget of £10. At first I was a bit stuck but then after giving it more thought I realised it was definitely possible and I made a nice soup, a vegetable stew and an apple pie. I think this challenge might have been one of the most important and useful of the course as it is really important to think within budget constraints if you want to share your cooking as much as you can with friends and family. In the afternoon we went of a fabulous walking tour with Jenny Linford and explored all the wonderful food that Soho has to offer.
Thursday was really awesome and we learnt some super tasty Chinese dishes; we made 3 different dim sums, a really nice chicken and black bean stir fry and a lovely prawn won ton soup. I was amazed at how much is possible with some cupboard staples such as hoisin sauce, rice wine, soy sauce and sugar.
The final day arrived and we all teamed up to make a really superb three course farewell lunch, consisting of a hot wild mushroom salad for starter, a seafood linguine, with homemade pasta, of course, for main and a tiramisu for dessert. All of this was accompanied by some delicious wines.
I’m now a little sad the course is over, but what I have learnt will be with me for life and I know I will be able to share my new skills with an appreciative group of friends and family. Every day was different and every day took us to new places. I’d like to send a huge thank you to Ros and all of the staff for making my last few weeks a life changing and memorable experience.
To find out more about the upcoming six week long Cook’s Certificate course, please click here.