Master Chef, Toothbrush Mustache, and the Mafia

Last night was the first class of the new semester. I’m all for new beginnings but it all felt kinda awkward. My new instructor walks into the room and the first thing I notice is the toothbrush mustache (politically correct term for Hitler-style mustache). Holy crap…this should be interesting. He introduces himself and I have to smile at his German accent. It’s all kind of charming and quaint. What better person to learn Classical cuisine from, than an actual classical trained European chef? Class gets settled in and we get shuffled up to the auditorium for an orientation assembly where the school’s main chef painfully blunders through the entire student handbook – rolling my eyes and not really paying attention my mind wanders away until he introduces our chef to the room as a Master Chef. Suddenly I’m excited, there are only like 60 of them in the country? And one of them is teaching here? And I have him for class? That’s all great but well f**k…

We get back to class and go through introductions, which takes forever because there are 30 of us crammed into the same kitchen that 9 of us barely managed to share last semester. He doesn’t seem terribly impressed by my introduction as I have no clear set goals for working in the restaurant industry…for now. I know that the whole hobbyist/see it on the food network and want to be just like Bobby Flay thing is underappreciated but real chefs, but I swear that’s not me. But I guess to someone that doesn’t know me, that’s how I appear. But I’ve got 10 weeks to change his mind.

He then spends the rest of class talking about himself…he’s had a long and interesting history in kitchens all over the world, starting at the equivalent of slave labor in the Black Forest of Germany, to working for major hotels, to opening culinary schools, and even for the mafia at some point. This guy really seems to know his stuff and is going to be really tough on us. He flat out says he’s here to criticize us so that we can learn. So if you think Gordon Ramsey is bad…just wait…I’m already taking bets in my head as to who he’s going to make cry first (Justin).

Needless to say, I am really excited to start cooking. Class is going to be like a different competition every week. Each class, 5 students are chosen as group leaders, who then pick out two other classmates to work with. The group has to work together on the assignment of the week and get all the food plated (nicely) on time. And then get torn to shreds by the Chef.

PS- No recipes to post for now. Haven’t been cooking anything at home the past few days since the chicken. I ate a semi-raw piece of that fried chicken and haven’t really been feeling well since.

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