This ideally should have been my first blog post because It’s an experience that I cherish very dearly. It’s one of those things that gave me so much happiness from the inside. That I chose to learn to bake at one of the best pastry schools in the world and that school was in Paris was just a huge added incentive.
I chose the intensive course because a longer break than that from home and my family was not entirely possible. And man, when they say it’s intensive it really is that. I used to be at school at 8.00 am sharp to make sure that i made it in time to the lockers to change into the uniform and make it to the class.
I loved every day of school. When you do things you love it’s not tedious and the long hours don’t matter. Some days I finished class at 8.45 pm and dragged myself back home and since Paris in the summer is just so beautiful and bustling, even the walk back home (on the days that i didn’t take the metro ) wasn’t too tedious.
The chefs were hard on us, hard when we didn’t listen, hard when we were tardy, hard when our table tops were dirty, hard when we injured ourselves (pay attention they would say), hard when we thought we had beaten the Chantilly enough and they said don’t stop not ready yet…. they were finicky about perfection. And that’s what makes this school so great. They were meticulous and strict and wanted each of us to strive for the best result.
They spoke French, but we always had a superb interpreter and that never really came in the way. It’s not about the best recipes a school like LCB offers, it’s the techniques that you learn – the best way to work on puff pastry or pate choux or what it takes to make those perfect meringues. The exam was taken as seriously as any exam would, both the practicals (I made the classic French apple tart that’s on my menu now) and the theory.The school now has a new campus but the old one where i studied was surprisingly small. I always imagined it to be large and far more bustling but it was small and so were the demonstration and the theory class rooms. But, that’s what made it warm and intimate and most students whether from pastry or cuisine got to know each other. I made some good friends from all over the world and it’s so nice to see each of them further their baking careers.