Sunday, February 28, 2010

Choux Dough

Choux dough is a classical french pastry. It is also known as the eclair and profiterole. It's pretty basic. You melt butter and milk together. Heat until it boils and then add flour stirring quickly until the flour and batter form a ball of dough. The ball of dough has to unstick to the pot as you stir. This lets you know the dough is ready. As it cools down in another bowl, you add beaten eggs, one at a time until the dough can be parted with a wooden spoon and also reunite slowly.

The professor, or the object of affection, is a ball of dough and I don't have a clue where this is going? He teaches pastries 101. He is a significantly older man. He also keeps in shape and is lean. Lets call him Sam.
I am studying french culinary in Latin America. Go figure. I don't ever plan these things and I seem to find inspiration to do something from somewhere out of context. I was entering my last semester of the first year   and finally taking the dreaded pastries class. As an aspiring cook, pastries is the enemy. It becomes very technical and tricky with pastries.  I saw bakery and breads the semester before and I found that extremely challenging at least in the beginning. Then I got the hang of it least in French cuisine bread dough is to be kneaded until smooth, left to ferment and then roll it into a baguet.
The second class of pastries 101, I had the chance to chat with Sam. Introduce myself as this foreign girl who maybe could use some sympathy during grading since after all Spanish is not my native language.
Sam doesn't really care much. He shrugs. I guess he is the sarcastic type. I could care less about his attitude since well I work 11 hours a day, 6 days a week and am paying half my salary for culinary school.
Within the following weeks leading to our final exam, Sam begins to warm to me. I don't know why. I am getting fatter, looking worse, then getting thinner, looking horrible. I have a roller coster consistency with self appearance. Work is weighing me down at the restaurant. Its become pretty one is ordering desserts and I am the sole dessert cook there!
Sam chats with me during workshop. I am sure its just as entertaining for him that we chat in English-Spanish. He seems bored with our class. You see he is this pretty renowned pastry maestro teaching elementary pastries to a bunch of pimpled faced recent high school grads or homemakers bored at home.
There have been a few close encounters on the lips...once when he kissed me goodbye bouche-a-bouche
o lala

I was intrigued and attracted. I got to learn more about him. I liked that we were both somewhat on a dead end path...he should be teaching at Cordon Bleu and I wanted to quit working and concentrate on a number of small independent projects such as food writing.
Finally I was hooked. I imagined and fantasized sexual scenes of us being together in a quaint kitchen full of shelves with cooking chocolate, vanilla extra and pretty china. Then I wanted to know what he would be like with me if we were actually together. I am this 20 something year old student dating her 40 something year old professor...isn't this too cliche and wouldn't this be doomed before it began?
Two people more different than day and night come together because life is a big disappointment or of each other's sexual desire?

Choux Dough is a classical french pastry. You melt butter and milk together and bring to a boil. Add flour and stir until it becomes a ball of dough. Leave to cool and then add one beaten egg at a time...a profiterole rises from water vapor pressure. Sam, I learned, is a lonely bastard. We could never be more different. Like the Choux dough, he is also 4 simple components (milk, butter, flour, and eggs or man, sex, disappointment, and bordem) that are brought together and beaten repeatedly until separated only to identify its point of union. Sam is a man of simple taste and simple life rules; i want sex and who can easily give it?
He doesn't search far and wide. They are in his class. Young students and teacher assistants. Unfortunately for me, I was one of his students.