Thursday, May 1, 2008

Nutrition: It Does A Body Good!

As chefs-in-training we are taught the basics about nutrition. Nutrition is a fascinating subject for me, I love food and learning about how nutrients effect our body in terms of health and disease.

We have a different Chef teaching us about nutrition who has attended FCI and who also has a Masters from NYU in food service. We learned about the three categories of macronutrients including proteins, lipids and carbohydrates. As a living breathing person we need a large amount of these to maintain weight and health.

There are also micronutrients that we require but in lesser amounts, these are vitamins and minerals. For the first half of the class we have a lecture and the second half we prep and make one recipe. On this night we made a Filet of Striped Bass over Puy Lentils. The lecture was very interesting, a lot of information to take in at once. Afterwards we prepped our mise en place, filleted the bass which gets easier and easier. I’m no longer feeling daunted when confronted with a whole fish. The only thing that kind of grosses me out is when we have to use our melon baller to scoop out the fish eyes. If we use the heads for fish stock, the eyes have got to go.

Our dish had many components, we cooked the lentils first with some aromatic vegetables, we glazed some pearl onions, we made a vinaigrette as the sauce and then finally we sautéed the bass fillets skin side down until crispy on one side, then flipped over to cook for less then a minute on the delicate fleshy side. My partner Michele and I plated our food and presented, Chef wanted the pearl onions cooked a little more and thought the vinaigrette could have been thinned out a bit.

Our next two classes will continue on the theme of nutrition – so more on that in my next few posts.

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