Monday, July 26, 2010

The FoodLover was an Intern :)

I have decided that it would be fun to share with you my weekly logs for the internship I just completed at Black Star Farms.  It is a requirement to complete 300 hours of experience in order to graduate and within 10 weeks I have finally and successfully completed this task.  For the next ten days I will post each weeks story- the synopsis that i had to send to my instructor.  I hope you enjoy- it was really fun for me to go back and read these now that i have been at Blackstar for almost three months.  So many amazing and wonderful things have happened since I started my journey there and I can't wait to see what happens next!  I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to be doing what I love everyday- A foodlover's dream come true!

Internship- Black Star Farms
Steph Sheffer
Week 1

-Early morning scene outside kitchen door at the Inn in Late April

The sound of a rooster crowing is my very first indication that I have arrived at my dream job destination.  An “Agricultural Destination” is the branding slogan that Black Star Farms uses and I can’t think of any better way to describe it myself.  There are so many different venues on the Black Star Farms property that lend to the overall success of fulfilling this slogan.  I would like to start with the Inn where I will begin my culinary discoveries and learning process for the internship requirement that has brought me to this extraordinary and dream fulfilling employment opportunity.
For the first week at Blackstar I spent the majority of my time at the Inn learning and shadowing the process of creating Breakfast for the guests.  Immediately I am aware that this is going to be a very unique chance to exercise not only my culinary skills that I have gained from school this past year, but I will also be calling upon my decade of experience as a homemaker and the many times I have experienced opening my fridge and coming up with a meal based on what is there.  The pantry is stocked, don’t get me wrong, and the coolers and refrigerators have many different things to work with, but the only thing that is a constant is the egg.  That is because the farm has over 100 egg laying chickens and ducks to rely on.  This is a good thing since eggs are a classic when it comes to preparing breakfast.

On my first day the chef I am training with sent me out to the side of the shed to cut chives as part of the garnish for the breakfast entrees.  He also had me prepare the breakfast bar that daily consists of fresh fruit, homemade granola, vanilla bean yogurt and a variety of breakfast sweet breads and bread from the brick oven bakery that is another aspect of the farm.  I learned that the majority of the breakfast meats we use are also a product of some of the animals that are raised on the farm too.   The most profound thing I realized though is that this breakfast that is prepared for the guests has to have a “Wow” factor and by that I mean that we want our guests to feel extra special when their entrée is place in front of them.  This requires a lot of attention to not only flavors but also to presentation.  The chef I work with seems to have a lot of experience with this and I am excited to learn all of the tricks of the trade that have to do with composing a beautiful plate.

-Chef Jon plating up Root Vegetable Waffle Entree on my first day at The Inn

-Root Vegetable Waffle Stack with Shaved Ham, a poached egg and hollandaise- Yum!!!

After the first day or two the Chef tells me that I will do my first solo breakfast towards the end of the month- a day later he decides I am ready to do one as soon as week two!  I am ready for the challenge and I can’t wait to show them what I can do!