Wednesday, March 6, 2013

More from K: Sprouts Cooking at Tartine

It was a good cooking weekend for K: First the Omnivore Books pudding contest and then on Sunday she participated in a Sprouts Cooking class at Tartine Bakery. I've mentioned Sprouts here before, they offer cooking classes, camps and more, all designed to get kids better connected to the food that they eat and cook. K has really enjoyed everything that she has done with them and I admit that more than once I have wished that I could participate as well. Perhaps someday they will offer a parent-child class. For more info, see there site.

From K: "First we walked to Tartine. It felt like walking to school, except I had my kit of knives, a rolling pin, apron and two rags with me. As soon as I got there, they talked to us about kitchen safety and showed us around the kitchen. There were 9 kids in the group with one baker from Tartine and three from Sprouts. One of things we saw was a walk-in refrigerator. It was giant and had blocks of butter that were something like 44 pounds each!

They split us into groups and gave us a recipe. One group made a small batch and the other made a giant batch of a dough called Pate a Choux. I was in the giant group. We each got a different ingredient. I got two--butter and sugar! You had to scrape the butter off of one of the giants blocks. The sugar was in a regular container. 

After we finished the dough, we separated 120 eggs. We did not use them for our project. It was fun because there was so many of them and the pile of yolks was enormous. We needed to use two containers.

Then we piped the dough out onto baking sheets. I made broomsticks, circles, a K and an eight. While they were baking, we made whipped cream. We each had bowls and whipped it by hand. It took a while. At home we usually just do it in the mixer. Then we mixed some of it with pre-made pastry cream to make Bavarian Cream. Then we supremed citrus. That is a fancy way of cutting so you don't get any of the pith. It also makes neat slices.

When the dough was finished baking, we started assembling. We cut the shapes in half and put whatever we wanted inside: whipped cream, Bavarian cream, powdered sugar or fruit. Later they brought out caramel and two kinds of Bi-Rite ice cream: salted caramel and cookies and cream, that we could also use. The dough tasted kind of like a popover. They were really good and I made a bunch to bring home to Mama.

The best part of the class was assembling and eating. I learned how to supreme fruit and what Bavarian cream was. I also got to see the inside of a professional kitchen and that was cool. I was surprised at how small it was, considering how busy they are. The baker was also really nice and so were the kids. I hope I can go to Sprouts Camp again this summer."

Slightly messy from transport, but proof she really did bring some home.

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