Sunday, February 7, 2010

First Exam: Tarts & Cookies

This past Tuesday was my first exam in pastry school. Technically, I had already taken my sanitation exam (which I passed!), but this was the first actual exam testing my knowledge of baking. Not knowing what to expect, I was thoroughly freaked out and studied probably more than I ever had before. The exam had both a written and practical component. I felt confident about the practical (actual baking) part, and the written section was a lot less difficult than I thought it was going to be. Each of us was randomly assigned a set of 2 tarts and 1 cookie. They were all things we had previously made in class, and I got nut tart, chocolate ganache tartlettes, and bourbon pecan cookies.

Presentation tray of finished tarts & cookies

I'm happy with the way everything came out. I felt like I was organized, worked at a good pace, and produced a good end result. Chef Cynthia seemed to think everything went well, but I won't know for sure until I get my grades back on Tuesday. She did say my cookies were a little on the large side, but I'm pretty sure they tasted okay (I couldn't actually try two of my final products because of the pecans and hazelnuts).

Close up of my ganache tartlettes, decorated with white chocolate

Now that tarts & cookies is over, we've moved on to choux (cream puff) pastry. After each unit, we rotate partners and this unit I happen to be the odd man out (we have 17 students in my class). I think it will be okay as long as I can stay on top of dish washing!


Cooking Foodie said...

Good luck with the grades. The tart and cookie certainly pass the 'see and drool' test!

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