Category Archives: In-Depth 2015

Bake At 400 For 3 Weeks: In-depth Post #7/8

Finally, bake the dessert in the oven for three weeks at 400 degrees celsius.

Wait, that’s the last step of the recipe! Oh my gosh, that’s it, I’m almost done!

Yes, my in-depth project is nearing a close, and as I put my project in the oven for it’s final stage of baking, I can only hope it turns out alright. I’ll put my finishing touches on my presentation dishes and plans so that I’m ready when the dessert comes out, and I can get my icing ready so I’ll be lickety split, before it gets licked up, in literally putting the icing on the cake. As in-depth nears the end I am beginning to work on my preparations for in-depth night itself. I have spent many long sessions with my mentor trying different recipes and learning about different techniques and types of baking, along with some tricks of the trade. Nonetheless, I’m not quite done yet, I still have to be sure not to burn my cake!

In my most recent sessions with my mentor, this past weekend, we spent our time baking three separate dishes over the course of two days. The dishes we prepared this time were a chocolate wafer layer cake, “old-fashioned cookies”, and a secret dish that I am considering making for in-depth night.

For the layer cake, we prepared the cake portion of the dessert on the first day, and made the icing, in this case acting as the glue, and assembled the cake on day two. The cake was much sweeter than I expected and fairly firm in its texture. Below is a picture of the cake being mixed and the portion which was later cut in half and stacked in between icing and wafers to create the layer cake.

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The second dessert of our weekend baking adventures, was pressed cookies, or as my mentor called them “old-fashioned cookies”. I believe she uses this name because we made them using an old family cookie press of hers that she brought form her home in Croatia. It was very cool to use this press and it made the cookie cutting very efficient. It also allowed you to choose from multiple designs for your cookies. For these cookies, we made the dough on day one and then cut them and baked them on day two. The recipe made a very large amount of cookies so it took a while to cut and bake them all and I came home with a few more treats than expected. Below are some pictures of the cookie cutting/pressing and the finished products.

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(sorry for all the pictures being in a line, when I put them in via Flickr link, my blog doesn’t allow me to edit the size or location of the photo)

Finally, the third, mystery, dessert, is… Well I can’t tell you, because then you would know what I’m going to make on in-depth night, which I guess would be okay, but don’t you think it would be better as a surprise? Well actually, I might not make this dish for the event night. I was planning on it, but for one, in my mentor session, it was rather difficult to create, which is a good thing because it challenges me, however, there are also some time constraints for the dish and I’m not sure how it would work for the actual event. We’ll see what works itself out in the coming weeks, but for now, I’m still looking for a way to present this dish to you all! Here are some pictures of a part or the mystery dessert/dish, as a small hint or teaser perhaps.

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To finish off this post with some insight from de Bono, I have chosen to write in the sections of emotions and feelings, and diversions and off-course. I think these two sections of de Bono’s writings come up often in my mentor sessions, sometimes related to baking, and sometimes “off-course”.

One example of both of these categories, is a conversation with my mentor from a session a month or so ago. As we have to wait for the dishes to bake, if we are not working on another dish while the first is in the oven, then we often end up talking about sometimes unrelated topics. Sometimes we will discuss the dish we are making, or go over recipes for later or alternatives for when making a certain dish. However, the conversation that I am going to use, was when my mentor asked me about my in-dpeth project itself.

Although this conversation was about my project, it was more off topic as we were waiting for a dessert to bake in the oven, so we had no rush or urgent matters to discuss. It was also a more broad discussion, not focused specifically on what we were doing that day. So this conversation was a diversion from the topic, or an off-course conversation.  My mentor asked me what subject the in-depth project counted for when we are marked on it, and I actually wasn’t sure. Initially I tried to puzzle my way through it and answer a couple other of her general questions about the project. She was rather surprised that it was unclear what subject it went towards, and also largely because I was unsure so came across somewhat unclear as to whether it counted for much at all. At this point in the conversation we both were feeling confused, but we hadn’t necessarily clearly shared that emotion with each other yet. I then clarified to her that I was really not sure as to what area it counts for in large part. I had made some logical guesses, but I wasn’t positive. She then answered with a “Ohhh, I see” type of reaction, and now we were both on the same page as to where the other stands in terms of understanding if the issue. Now we both have a more positive and less confused outlook and emotion on the conversation, tying in to the other option of posts’ section on “attitude”. From here  we continued to discuss this topic until it became clear there wasn’t much more for either of us to say, at which point, she gathered over the kitchen island with me and we looked through a cooking book of hers and she showed me some tips for different baking steps.

I have come a long way in my baking endeavour, but as I said, I still have a little ways to go before the desserts come out of the oven. I’ll be back on those pots, at the ready, planning for the final hurrah of in-depth night! I hope to see you there, and if not, have a wonderful day, and week, and year, and life!

Bye for now, and I’ll go prep those piping bags to put the icing on my project!

The Process and The Recipe – In-Depth Post #6

After a much needed break and “chill time” in my recipe, I’m back to continue in this endeavour. In fact, I reunited myself with the baking processes almost instantly upon my return from vacation. The day after I arrived home I had a meeting with my mentor. As my mentor didn’t have any orders or specific dishes to make, she had chosen some new and unique treats for us to try. We had an action-packed afternoon of baking wherein we made three different recipes.

We alternated throughout the session between a chocolate zucchini cake, some cranberry scones, and then finished with some Belgian waffles. I didn’t get a picture of the waffles, but they were delicious, however, I did snap a few shots of some of the zucchini cake and a few of the scones after bringing them back from my mentor.

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I apologize for the the zucchini cake being slightly chopped up. We were very eager to get a taste and then realized I should take a photo first!

As you can see, on the zucchini cake we added a sprinkling of icing sugar to give it some sweetness, and on the scones, we first coated the tops with melted butter and then sprinkled them with regular white sugar for some additional flavour.

I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy the chocolate zucchini cake as I am not sure if I have even had zucchini before this, but my mentor, as after every completed recipe, insisted I try some, and to my slight surprise, it was extremely good! Then again, why should I be surprised, my mentor is an outrageous baker, anything she touches is delicious. I found that the cake tasted a lot like banana loaf: not extremely sweet, but very satisfying.

As for the scones, they were also very good. Unlike the zucchini though, I have had countless scones before, and of different types. The sugar on the top added a nice touch, and when some butter is added to freshly cut open insides of the scone, it collapses into your mouth very tastily.

Set aside all of this baking, the reason I chose the title “The Process and The Recipe” for this post, was because of the Edward de Bono topics for this reporting period. This post’s topics are ‘Concepts’, and ‘Alternatives’. I thought these fit very well into recipes and process as there are always key skills, or concepts, that must be done correctly for the recipe to turn out well and there are always multiple variations, or alternatives, to which the recipe can be completed or changed.

Listed below are some examples of some concepts my mentor and I have used, talked about, or worked on in my recent sessions. In addition, I have listed, beside the concept, a couple examples of ‘Practical Ideas’ of the concept. De Bono has said “Concepts are the parents of practical ideas” :

– Mixing: whisking, stirring, mixing(mixer)

-Sweetening: adding sugar, using milk in replacement of water(richening)

– Melting: microwave, room temperature, stove

– Non-sticking: greasing, flour, vegetable oil spray

– Molding: cutting, kneading, rolling

As you can see from these examples of some baking concepts, they flow naturally into the theory of alternatives. De Bono explains how alternatives allow one to grow upon the basic skills or task and go deeper into it. He also talks of how alternatives are for both the future(action), present, and past(perception). I found this statement very interesting as it shows how our chosen route can govern all aspects of our life, whatever that route may be.

As you can see, all of the different ideas listed above are alternatives of each other. My mentor has both shown and told me of various ways of doing things when baking. One particular alternative that stuck out to me as very valuable and interesting was her alternative of using milk in store-bought cake recipes instead of water. She told me how this would make the cake seem fresher and not like it was made from a box. She expanded further by telling me that I could use this alternative for any recipe and it would have the same effect.

Further, as I discussed in a previous post, she recently gave me many useful combinations, or mixtures, on how to make different ingredients that are often found in recipes so that I don’t have to buy them from the store. One of these was making self-rising flour out of other common ingredients.

The most important alternative, and the truth of a baker’s love for baking, is that most treats, desserts, along with many other foods you see in stores, can be made by hand, by yourself. My mentor, of course, has shared this with me multiple times and this past session joked about how she had seen scones in the store and how expensive they were, and thought to herself, “you know, it’s not that hard to make those”.

Well that’s all for now. I hope all of you had just as relaxing and enjoyable break as I did and I look forward to what the future holds in the closing chapter of my first high school year, and this baking endeavour!

A Busy Baker – In-Depth Post #5

It has been a busy week for me in the world of baking(and many other aspects too actually)! It started off with some volunteer work for a poetry and music event, Slam Jam,  that was held by my classmates this past Tuesday, The event raised over $900 dollars that is all going towards Covenant House in Vancouver. Upon request for volunteer bakers, I took the opportunity to get some extra practice in and try out some of the skills I have been learning with my mentor. I spent a very long time on what was originally going to be shortbread, brownies, and cookies, but turned out as just shortbread. I ran out of time mainly because I was putting in so much effort towards making all my baked goods turn out just right.

I also ran into a couple of problems throughout my baking. I considered calling my mentor for assistance but I managed to problem solve and find a way to make them work. The main issue I encountered was that I put the dough in the fridge for too long. This caused it to harden up far too much to be rolled out and thus forcing me to wait until it was warm enough to do so.

Once I began rolling the dough out and working it, it became much easier to work with and warmed up significantly. I also ended up getting largely more cookies out of the dough than I had expected so it partially made up for what I did not have time to make. The cookies turned out great and I decided to go with a light purple frosting to test out my piping skills. I contacted Jamie, a Slam Jam committee member to confirm the theme colours. Then, I had some fun!

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I present to you, my Slam Jam masterpieces!

I was very proud of my cookies, especially because I made a couple customized ones with Slam Jam and SJ on them special for the event. There are still a couple areas I could improve on slightly in my piping but overall I felt that they turned out very well!

Next on the menu, I went to visit my mentor! This time it was the patience for pastry as the main course. However, we also made some delicious chocolate and graham wafer squares(unlike the chocolate pudding cream puffs, some of these still remain, hidden in the fridge). As noted, my mentor showed me how to make cream puffs, which we filled with a simple chocolate pudding. However, she explained to me that as cream puffs don’t have sugar in them, and do have eggs, they can really be filled with any type of food. From dinner, to snacks, to lunch, breakfast, and especially dessert, these little guys can satisfy any mood of a dish. Actually, as I just went to check to take a picture of some of the graham squares, it looks like they’ve disappeared too! Hmm, I guess I have to move really fast to document everything in this project.

During my mentor session, I was able to record a short portion of our conversation. The part that I have transcribed below is from a discussion about the cookbook housing the recipe for our cream puffs. This portion of conversation is not, unfortunately, from while we are actually working on the dessert as at this point we are waiting for them while they bake. Nonetheless, I think this is a good random example of our conversations.

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Laura: So if I want to make the custard filing, this is the ingredients you need: you need cornflour, which is cornstarch, and then custard powder, and sugar of course, milk, there’s a little bit of vanilla, and a carton of cream, it’s like half and half. Also, if I don’t understand something that it says on the recipe, I can go here on the back, and it says, I can look it up. If it says let’s say cornflour, it’s cornstarch. … Let’s say a self-rising flour, how you create that, … So if you have a recipe that calls for a self-rising flour, you put the amount that it tells you in for the flour, plus this.

Me: Ohhh.

Laura: And that is going to give you the self-rising flour.

Me: That’s handy.

Laura: Yeah. So I kind of like that too, the book for it. And it’s nice how, it helps, how the book explains it to you, how to do it.

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This dialogue begins with Laura going over the recipe for the custard filling of the cream puffs that we made. Then she explains some features of the book, followed by how she likes the book because of those features.

In reference to de Bono’s “six hats” theory, this conversation, along with most of my mentorship conversations, includes mainly the “white hat” form of conversation and thinking. Most of the time, we are specifically working on skills or in this case, reviewing a recipe, and Laura is giving me direct factual information about how to do something or why something works.

Additionally, in this conversation, Laura continues by discussing her personal feelings about this cookbook or resource. This part of the discussion, or her thinking here, could fall under the “red hat” category as she talks about her feelings, however her opinion is justified and she is seeing and looking for the benefits of the cookbook. Therefore, this portion of the discussion would be categorized as the “yellow hat” form.

 

Finally, I finished my week off with baking some cookies, just last night. We were out of cookies in our house, which is never a good thing, and so I decided to make possibly my favourite type that I’ve learnt. They are made of cake mix which gives them a very sweet flavour as well as a uniquely gooey texture inside. Then, they are filled with white and dark chocolate chips, as well as small chopped up, Oreo bits.

Despite our lacking of cookies, we are going away on Monday, so I didn’t want all the cookies we aren’t going to eat to go to waste. So I decided to take enough in for everyone in my TALONS class to have one. As a spring break treat! Well they were a hit, everyone loved them. In fact, I have had multiple requests to post the recipe on our group Facebook page. The sad news is, they have also been popular at home.

Do not fear, I got a picture of what was left a little earlier this evening!

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I know, it’s sad. Oh well, I’ll make more another time.

Here is a closer up image of the above discussed cookies so you can see the different parts:

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I very much enjoyed all my baking this week and I am looking forward to doing some more soon!

Hope you enjoyed all the treats!

And have a great spring break!

Thanks for reading and by for now,

Anne F.Y.

The Secret Ingredient – In-Depth Post #4

Well another two weeks have gone by and my baking endeavour continues. Jumping right in to de Bono’s work, he talks about how listening is one of the most important aspects of learning, and if done well, you can obtain much greater value out of what the person is saying. I have definitely found myself listening much more than talking in the first few weeks of my mentorship. I have been trying to pay attention to all the details and fully understand what my mentor is saying.

Through all the pieces I have been picking up during my mentor sessions over the past few weeks, they seem to be forming a single picture as they come together, a secret ingredient you could say. But this ingredient may not be what you expect. From all the intricate designs of icing, and complicated recipe steps, the secret ingredient is the most simple of all.

What I have gathered so far as the key to baking, is that it is not solely your knowledge or skills in the area, but rather your creativity and joy for baking.

Once you have these, you can make anything; the possibilities are endless. Your creativity will take you to the next level, and the touch of a perfect cake is really the touch of the heart.

Continuing, while I have only been saying a little, a lot of what I have been saying is questions. Expanding on this, using de Bono’s two types of questions, fishing and shooting, I have mostly been asking shooting questions. Some of the questions I will ask are things like “Is this the right shape/size/thickness?”. I generally ask these questions to confirm and check on the techniques I have been taught, and am practicing, to ensure I am executing them correctly.

One question that I asked using a multiple choice format was “Do you flip them because they are thicker or because there is more in them?” I used this when we were removing some cookies from the oven to flip before putting back in for a second time facing the other way. I found this question format very useful as it digs even deeper into the topic and in this case caused my mentor to further explain the process. Her answer to my question was actually neither of my two suggestions, which gave me even more reason to have asked the question. As I hadn’t thought of the answer she gave me myself, this gave me more knowledge of why we were doing this. Her answer was that we were actually flipping them to create a more crunchy texture of the cookie, as they were a biscotti style.

Additionally, while spending time with my mentor, our conversations often trail to other topics. This past visit, while waiting for our latest batch of cookies to bake, my mentor told me some tales of her childhood in Croatia. It was very interesting to hear about the different way of life and it gave me a new perspective on some of the things we do here. I again asked some basic questions that spurred more in-depth discussions and explanations.

I am hoping to spend some time this weekend to do some baking of my own and try out some of the techniques my mentor has been teaching me. It should be interesting to see if I can execute the skills without her guidance.

I have been taking photos of all our recipes to keep track of everything we do, and also for practice myself. I may try some of these or try out some of my own. Further to what I talked about earlier on the secret ingredient, her recipes are all written out in hand. She has rewritten them her own style and in very basic form. This allows her to make as she goes, or should I say, bake as she goes, bringing out creativity in every dessert.

I am hoping to capture some of my own baking creativity and bring it to life in some of my own pieces very soon! Brining to life that picture puzzle of the secret ingredient.

P.S. Oh, and sorry, I wasn’t able to capture any pictures of my desserts this time around as they seem to have all magically disappeared somewhere.

The Mixing Begins – In-Depth Post #3

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You may be wondering why I chose this title for my post, or how it relates to the above picture, crêpes. Originally I was actually going to title this post, ‘The bread Arrives’, as a metaphor for the stage I am at in my project. The bread is being served at the table, one of the first dishes of the meal, and draws you in to the rest of the experience and what is to come. However, I realized that this might not be suitable as I am doing my project on baking, not cooking or full meal cuisine. So I decided on ‘The Mixing Begins’. Nevertheless, you may still be wondering how this title relates to the picture or my project. Well, similar to the bread metaphor, mixing is often one of the first steps in a recipe and provides the base for everything to follow. It is used in virtually any baking recipe, and is a vital piece of creating the unique texture special to the dessert or dish. Furthermore, when mixing, you can often add in secret ingredients or leave out certain things to create a specific result. This is where the title relates to the above(and below crêpes) picture, some crêpes I made with my mentor on my second meeting.
Image credits: wikihow.com

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As an additional skill to the cookies, brownies and handy truffles we were already making on our first and second meetings, my mentor taught me how to make some delicious and simple crêpes. As mentioned, this used the skill of mixing, but also controlling pan temperatures while cooking, greasing the pan, working at a slightly faster pace to try to keep an even crêpe all around before it dries in the pan, and some delicious taste testing. As previously, my mentor made the first few and demonstrated how to accurately and successfully create the crêpe, and then allowed me to try cooking some and practice applying the skills taught. I found a couple things difficult such as creating a round circle and being sure there were no holes in the edges of the crêpe, but after we coated the insides with a rosehip jam and some with Nutella, they were just fine.

Image credits: eurofooddeals.com
Image credits: amazon.de

 

 

 

 

 

 

As for continuing with de Bono’s How To Have  A Beautiful Mind, I found many connections and relations to my time with my mentor. In this week`s post and mentor time, we were encouraged to think about and mentally explore two areas of his book: ‘How to be Interesting’ and ‘How to Respond’. One of the examples de Bono gives on how to develop an ‘interesting’ conversation, is to use the phrase “Now that’s interesting.” This phrase deepens the conversation by first showing your interest in the topic or idea, and further, pushing you to explain why you are interested. I found myself saying this or a phrase very similar such as “That’s neat!” or “Oh that’s cool!” very often in my most recent meeting with my mentor.

Building off of my last post, many of the techniques or tools my mentor used that I agreed with, caused me to give the initial reaction of one of the above. Some of these techniques include her handy trick of forming a ring of icing around the edge of a cookie and allowing it to harden before icing the rest, creating a boundary stopping the icing from overflowing onto the sides of the cookie. Another being a very useful technique for greasing a glass dish for baking the brownie in. This consisted of oiling the inside of the dish with canola oil, followed by tossing over a large amount of flour to coat the inside of the dish. She then tilted the dish in all four directions one by one and tapped the flour around the edges so as to cover all areas of the dish. Finally she disposed of any excess flour and placed a sheet of parchment paper on the bottom of the dish with two ends remaining accessible from the top of the dish. The oil and flour technique I thought was very unique and creative and is a useful tool I can use in the future in multiple recipes. Also, I thought how she left the parchment paper sticking out was very clever as then, she explained, when the brownie is cooked, you can remove it fro the glass dish by simply pulling the two ends of the paper upwards and out. Similar to this, when making the crêpes, I also had to grease the pan. These will both be very useful and are a very practical skill which is one of de Bono’s suggestions for responding.

Another of de Bono’s propositions for ‘How to be Interesting’, is to ask ‘What if’ questions. One situation that I applied this to, mentioned previously, was when my mentor added corn syrup to the cookie icing to make it more glossy.This was very clever, but I wondered what effect this might have on the overall consistency of the icing. So I asked, “What if you didn’t put in the corn syrup?” Her answer was that it wouldn’t have any effect other than it wouldn’t be as shiny. Another situation in which the ‘What if’ card was played in our conversations, I didn’t actually have to ask. When I was pouring the mixture for the crêpes, and having some difficulty, my mentor provided me with some information on what impact any holes or imperfections would or wouldn’t have on the end product.

Lastly, something I found very useful and interesting in our conversations was the experience and information I gained from my english research essay on the crème brûlée, macarons, and cheescake. My mentor wanted me to try a small lemon meringue cheescake cupcake that she had been working on to test how it tasted after being stored in a fridge. May I just say it was delicious, but I could distinctly pick out the different textures and techniques that I learned about through my paper. I brought this up as well as in other conversations together and it served as an interesting connection and link even with my minimal experience. This is yet another thought of de Bono’s for ‘How to be Interesting’ and also ‘How to Respond’.

I enjoyed thinking about all these different thoughts and analyzing my conversations with my mentor using de Bono’s ‘How to be Interesting’ and ‘How to Respond’, and, of course, creating all these delicious treats. Unfortunately I don’t think very many of them will make it to school for some of you to try next week, however the next batch might! Thanks for reading and I look forward to adding in the next ingredient to this delicious project!

 

Cracked Open; In-Depth Post #2

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Picture above: some of me and my mentor’s baking from my first sessions with her.

Well, after a few weeks in the goings, I have successfully obtained a highly skilled mentor and begun learning some useful techniques of baking. You could say I have officially ‘cracked open’ my project, and a few eggs!

I met with my mentor for our first official meetings this past Saturday and Sunday, and we got right down to business working on some baking. So far, my mentor has been teaching me the different techniques and skills and then getting me to try them under her supervision. We’ve done this in the form of baking; she will prepare the first few cookies(for example) and then proceed to guide me in making the next few. Even in the short amount of time we have spent together, I have learnt tons, and I am strongly enjoying our baking time.

In terms of relating our first session to Edward de Bono’s How to Have A Beautiful Mind, it may not be quite as straightforward.

While meeting with my mentor, I tried to keep track of our conversations and everything she was saying in my head. I agreed with many different concepts and tools she explained to me that seemed highly useful in their respective desserts or tasks. I hadn’t heard of all of them before but they seemed like great solutions to simple problems that you may run into while baking. Some of these problems include her suggestions to melt chocolate in a bowl placed in a pot of boiling water on the stove, as opposed to in the microwave. This technique prevents burning the chocolate and also allows you to have greater control of the temperature and keep a close eye on it as it melts. Another handy trick, was to ice a small ring of icing around the edge of the cookies using a  piping bag before icing the entire surface. This acts as a barrier to prevent the icing from overflowing onto the edges of the cookie later on. You must let the ring harden before icing the rest so that it is firm when applying the rest of the icing. All of which I strongly agreed with and seems very logical.

As for disagreeing and differing, there’s not nearly that much, in fact, there isn’t really anything I can think of that I disagreed or differed with my mentor on. The reason for this is that I highly respect my mentor and her extensive knowledge of her craft, and in all honesty, everything she advised me of seemed perfectly logical to my mind as well. I have hardly any experience in this area of skill, so I might not be able to tell if she was doing something incorrectly, but at this point, I am focused and appreciative of building a strong mentor to mentee relationship and developing greater knowledge in the area. Maybe later down this in-depth road I will encounter something I can’t quite wrap my head around, but for now, it all seems amazing. At points in our conversations I did make attempts to bring up different solutions or paths for which we could take when making a certain part of a dessert or treat. For example, when she explained her secret ingredient(which I don’t want to expose) for making the icing shiny, I asked if it would affect the icing in any other way if you were to not add that ingredient. She answered saying that the only real effect on the icing is its appearance, which I then agreed with and understood. I suppose you could say that was a slight differentiation in our views on the future but I was really just unsure and asking for further information on what could occur.

Overall, my project is going very well. Our class integrated essay also proved very useful for me to gain more knowledge of some basic baking skills. I have been enjoying what I’ve been working on with my mentor, both baking and intaking, and I am looking forward to what is to come in the near future. Now what’s next on the menu?

The Beginning: In-Depth Endeavour #1 – Start Your Ovens; On Your Pots, Get Set, Action!

Feast, or should I say, treat your eyes to some of the desserts I might be making. Treat your mind to the life skills being learned. And treat your heart to the purpose and heart which baking presents.

Photo Credits: Wikipedia
Photo Credits: Cook 13

Over the break I watched a movie with my family released this past summer, titled The Hundred Foot Journey.

Picture Credits: Wikipedia

At first, I was left with great satisfaction and joy from the film, as I thoroughly enjoyed it for many reasons, but after some time, I realized the passion and heart that goes into cooking, that I had gained further knowledge of through this film.

The film takes place in a small French village in the south of France, where an Indian family attempts to open an Indian cuisine restaurant one hundred feet across the road from a Michelin-starred classical French restaurant. The two restaurants initially begin as rivals, and as one could expect, the owner of the French restaurant is not happy to have competition. The story continues, building further similarities with the classic Shakespearean tale, Romeo and Juilet, as the young chef of the Indian restaurant and the sous-chef of Le Saule Pleurer, the French restaurant, fall in love. However, unlike the Shakespearean tragedy, all ends well, and the two communities come together, accept, and welcome each other.

The story obviously revolves around food, but the passion and love for cooking and cuisine is what drives the characters towards their goals throughout the plot. Along with other key messages, this movie showed me how much heart and passion cooking and baking can really involve, and what meaning they can have.

When I have taken HomeEc at school before, and done some basic cooking and baking at home before, I have always taken pride in my work and enjoyed the  experiences. I have often wanted to further explore the area and really learn about the art of cooking and, in this case, baking. So as I have been interested in baking and cooking before, I decided to explore the desserts area specifically for various reasons. First of all, I am a highly picky eater. In cooking, and baking, it is very important to be able to taste the foods that you make , so I figured I would be absolutely fine tasting my cuisine if I studied desserts. Desserts, and baking, are also a very useful skill to have, as they can be used in many situations and could come in handy in many future situations.

Skills in the kitchen and using equipment properly and safely, are skills that can help me all throughout life, and will have a great impact in the future. Desserts can also be useful when preparing a dessert or treat for guests or a party, or when made in quality, can be an upgrade to an average bake-sale. However, for this project, I will be looking into more advanced styles of desserts, and attempting to explore and make some European style desserts and treats.

I am hoping to gain mentorship from my amazing baker neighbour, who has outstanding talent and ability in baking various European style treats, and desserts. Though I know my neighbour fairly well, and the idea is to expand on existing circles in the community, I am still planning on having her as my mentor, however I will be reaching out to one or possibly more businesses or other groups/experts in the field for experience and possibly further mentorship.

I have yet to talk to my neighbour about this proposal, as I have been extremely busy with the crazy start back at school and flash of a start to 2015! Hopefully this works out and I can get set up very soon!

For this project, I am planning on taking out practice sessions with my mentor on a semi-regular basis, as well as practicing skills and recipes learned on my own. As previously stated, I will also be attempting to gain further experience and knowledge from additional mentors or experiences in the community. Through this project, I also hope to gain some more knowledge about desserts in general and possibly some of the history that revolves around this infamous course.

I am still waiting to confirm many of the details for this project, as I am somewhat unfamiliar with the challenges or difficulty of what I plan to undertake, and the area in general. Once I have more information, hopefully in the next week, I will be able to more closely revise some of the more specific guidelines and plans for the project, such as how many different recipes I plan to learn, and the amount of assistance I will need.

As for now, maybe not eggs just yet, but I shall get cracking!