Chef for the Week: My Le Cordon Bleu Experience

Chef for the Week Le Cordon Bleu - Bleu Ribbon KitchenI was recently invited to embark on the culinary adventure of a lifetime with the world renowned cooking school, Le Cordon Bleu. It was a three day total immersion experience as part of the school’s Bleu Ribbon Kitchen enthusiast cooking workshops. I had an amazing experience learning new skills from professional Le Cordon Bleu chefs in Dallas and experiencing cooking in a sleek commercial kitchen.

Bleu Ribbon Kitchen ReviewBleu Ribbon Kitchen workshops are 2-day, 3-day, and 5-day culinary courses offered in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Hollywood, Las Vegas, Nevada, Miami, Minneapolis, Orlando, Pasadena, Portland, Sacramento, San Francisco, Scottsdale, Seattle, Washington, and St. Louis.

The 3-day workshops, like the one that I participated in, give the gourmet home cook an adventure into international cuisine by focusing on a particular genre of food. You can explore your favorite region and learn a new ethnic style of cooking. How fun is that? The genre for my course was “A Taste of Mexico” which just so happens to be my family’s favorite.

Le Cordon Bleu - Bleu Ribbon KitchenWhen I arrived at Le Cordon Bleu in Dallas on the first day, I was a bit intimidated because of my awareness of the school’s reputation for excellence. I feared that maybe the chefs wouldn’t be friendly or patient enough and that I wouldn’t feel confident in their kitchen. I couldn’t have been more wrong! I was greeted by charismatic, smiling chefs and a swag bag of goodies including my very own chefs jacket, apron, and hat. It was fun to wear chef’s attire! I was also given a bound book of the recipes that we’d be cooking and several pages of other helpful information. A table of snacks, goodies and beverages was available to me for breakfast and for use throughout the day. The Blue Ribbon Kitchen chefs sure do know how to make a girl feel welcome!

Le Cordon Bleu - Bleu Ribbon KitchenI spent the next three days immersed in the preparation of dishes native to Mexico. I got a crash course in the historical origin of dishes, insight into the Mexican culture, and the opportunity to learn how to cook the way that the natives do.  I discovered fabulous new flavor combinations and time-tested cooking techniques. I even worked with ingredients that I hadn’t heard of and I handled peppers and spices that I never would have had the gaul to cook with before. I even cooked cactus! Who can say that they’ve cooked & eaten cactus? This girl can.

Cactus - Le Cordon BleuCactus - Le Cordon BleuCactus - Le Cordon BleuThe chefs were a delight. They were very knowledgeable and eager to answer any and all of my questions. The Le Cordon Bleu motto is that there is no such thing as a stupid question which was great because I definitely had some. Our class size was small so the students received true hands on instruction. There’s nothing quite like that! At times I felt like I was in a real restaurant preparing a meal for real guests. It was thrilling!

I have taken several cooking classes in the past but they fail in comparison to the Bleu Ribbon Kitchen experience. I learned more in those three days at Le Cordon Bleu than I have in my years of cooking combined. My knife skills improved, my confidence grew and the three days flew by.

Chef for the Week at Le Cordon Bleu - Bleu Ribbon KitchenOne perk that my family thoroughly enjoyed from the workshop is the food that I got to take home each day. At the end of class, the students and chefs dine together. It’s our chance to try out all of the dishes that we just created. I can’t even explain how cool that is! I wish that I could do that every day. Upon eating, we got to pack up the leftovers and take them home.

What was my husband’s favorite food that I brought home? Churros! I’d never made them before and they were a huge hit with the mister and his sweet tooth.

Le Cordon Bleu - ChurrosWhat was my favorite? I couldn’t get enough of the adobo pork that we made on day one. I loved it so much that I’ll be sharing the recipe and step-by-step photos with you very soon.

Another favorite of mine was flan. It’s a beautiful dessert! There’s no way that I would have tried to make flan at home on my own. However, after this workshop I feel confident enough to try anything in my kitchen. That is what I got the most of my Le Cordon Bleu experience . . . courage and confidence.

That is priceless.

Flan - Le Cordon BlueI will be sharing some recipes, tutorials, and tips and tricks from my Le Cordon Bleu experience this month so be sure to check back and learn how the professionals do it.

Bon appétit!

Keep Creating, Jennifer Pilgrim

Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post but as always, all opinion are my own.

Jennifer Pilgrim at ModernPilgrimBlog.comPINTERESTFACEBOOKINSTAGRAMTWITTERGOOGLE+RSSEMAIL

Comments

  1. Oh wow, so jealous!! I’m a home cook and a baker… love it with passion. With 2 kids don’t have much time to do either one, but I would love the Cordon Bleu experience. Looking forward to your recipes!

  2. I recently hosted a Disneyland themed #DisneySide home party and looked everywhere for a local catering company with churros. We had turkey legs and hand battered corndogs at the party but missed our favorite theme park treats. I wish I could make churros as pretty as yours…they would have been perfect for our party!
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  3. What a fantastic experience that must have been!
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  4. Veronica says:

    Thanks so much for posting your experience at Le Cordon Bleu.
    I have been attending their Saturday classes for more than two years now and I’d like to ask you a few questions about your experience.
    Normally the classed I attended costs $99. We make 4 recipes or 5.
    The class started at 10am and finished around 1pm pr 2pm, depending on how organized the chef were.
    Some chef do a lot of preparations for the students: they chopped and measured ingredients … some other chef don’t do anything and that when a big chaos in the class happened.
    Still I do love their classes.
    This year Le Cordon Bleu increased their prices by 1000% so I am really curios to find out from your experience the difference and maybe try these longer classes too.
    How many recipes did you cook every day?
    For the price you did pay I hope all the ingredients were cut and measured for you in advance? were they?
    How many people in your class?
    How many students were there to assist you and the chef?

    Thanks in advance for your time and happy cooking!

    • Hello Veronica! Thanks for commenting. We had 3 people in our class so it was very hands on. I couldn’t have asked for a better learning environment. Nothing was pre-measured, cut, or chopped for us but I prefer it that way. My chopping skills greatly improved because of this and I came away feeling like I had also taken a professional knife course. I truly needed that! We usually had 2 students assisting us in the kitchen so we could easily breeze through some of the prep work. Like the classes you have taken at Le Cordon Bleu, we made 4 to 5 recipes each day and our class was from 9am until 2pm. I hope that helps!
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  5. Hey Jennifer :-) I can only say I could not be more jealous! That sounds like SUCH an amazing experience… GOOD FOR YOU! I have the Culinary Institute of America not far from me that offers similar courses… You might just be my inspiration to sign up!
    Thanks for sharing :-)
    Blessed be,
    Michael
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