DC 27's Culinary Journey

Where we play with fire, and we love it.

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Monday, January 28, 2008
Today was pretty uneventful, starting the day out with doing the centre piece yee sang. During split shift I ended up staying back to help cos' seriously, I was too bored. I ended up eating a piece of every dim sum I made with one of the Commis. I didn't have to worry too much about dinner after that. XP

Except for a certain carelessness that left me with a knife cut through the nail of my forefinger into the flesh. Usually knives stop short of your nails, that's why we have them. Surprised? It actually protected my fingers from uncountable cuts that could've cut my fingers off. This time though, the knife is sharper and sliced cleanly into my nail. *Ouch*

Then the chef gave me a cute lil' plaster, bright yellow with pictures of animals wearing shirts playing around. Mader... I don't think it was on purpose... XP

Tonight due to something that has something to do with the head, we had cause for celebration (of sorts). Mind you, it wasn't a celebration for him. Haha... The point is that yee mee with Boston lobster is not something you get often, and the taste is not too shabby. You understand I can't be too explicit right?

So with a full stomach and a nice relaxing time chillin' in the cafeteria waiting for Han and Yi Lin, using the internet and drinking free coke, with an off day tomorrow, what more could I ask? Eat your hearts out DC!!

And they call me Magnum

Tuesday, January 22, 2008
I'm in Eest now. Bye Prego. *sob sob*

Darren's there. Not sure how he is.

Anyway... Here's a brief runthrough on what I learned the time I was in Prego.

1. Sarcasm has to be taken with a pich of salt.
2. Wash face can be done anytime as long as you finish your work.
3. Make arenchini.
4. Real Italian pizza.
5. Just because they chef looks fierce doesn't mean he is.
6. Girls are generally treated better.
7. I know the difference between farina flour and semolina flour.
8. Garlic bread Italian style!
9. Tomato dip.
10. Baked oyster.
11. Shucking oyster hurt after doing a few hundred.
12. Eggplant timbale.
13. Beef carpaccio.
14. Cook risotto.
15. Gossiping is generally allowed. *smirks*
16. Don't tell on your colleagues to your big boss (especially the BIG one, not just the dept head) before confronting them. Be honest or they will ostracize you. (Not pretty, this one.)
17. I quote Jon. "Ask whenever whatever." Seriously. But not exactly when they're uber busy at the hotplate plating food for 25. That's called suicide people.

Did I mention I got left by the train because I was shy of a 10 sen coin and friggin' 7 Eleven didn't have change? OMG I was so pissed. I took a cab back, luckily before 12, and it cost me RM 25. Now broke, I pray it'll never happen again.

Thinking clearly now, why didn't I just buy a cheaper ticket? Setia Jaya doesn't even check. Idiot.

Remember how I use to complain about having to work through my split shift? Now I had a split shift yesterday and found it so mind-numbingly boring I i think I'll work through split and still go home at 10. Learn more this way.

Now there's a celebrity chef in Eest doing a showcase, Mark Best of Australia. So things are going slower for the kitchen. I'm resting on my laurels, my ass looking like pancakes. Did I mention I tired foie gras which is so overrated (unless you start saying it's an acquired taste). It's oily, creamy and bitter, very me-muakkan. And Eest is serving Yee Sang so I've strated leaning how to do it.

And since I'm an employee, I get a 50% percent discount on food purchased there. So Yi Lin, if you still want to continue the plan, tell me and I'll order us Yee Sang with Yellow Fin Tuna for less than RNM 50!!! XDD

The brownie attack...

Monday, January 21, 2008
Hey there readers, I shall explain the meaning about the title later, for now, let's read/write about what's been going on with my traning shall we? Well, i'm starting to finally get used to the workload here, just yesterday we had a full house and I was stationed at stewarding again because the steward was having his off day. And then came the full house, the restaurant was bloody packed, with guest finishing eating, leaving, and having another new batch come take their place. And guess what, I didn't die. I actually relished it, I don't know why, but I was excited. I didn't groan when loads of plates were coming, I accepted, started washing, and hummed a tune.(Seriously.)

But, of course, I needed some help in the end. Why? Cause it was bloody impossible to finishing washing and clearing up at 11:30 if help was not there. Try washing, putting plates in the dishwasher, closing the dishwasher, washing plates for the next tray, open the dishwasher, push the tray out, put in another tray, put the plates in the tray, wash plates summore until the tray is full, close the dishwasher, take the plates from the first tray, and put them in place around the kitchen, come back, open the dish washer, and cycle through from the start again. Too much bloody time, so why not, have another person carry the plates, while you wash? Easy. It finally ended when the kitchen closes(At 10:30, the kitchen is considered closed) But those were the plates only, we still had to clean up the kitchen(Washing lots of the kitchens utensils) But it was fun nevertheless.

Ah now for the brownie attack, the kitchen was empty, both the heads were out making calls for diliveries, and the rest were on break, while I was in there, already had my break, to fend for myself. I thought I could, guess I was wrong. An order came in for 1 brownie dessert. So I took the brownie out, put it in the microwave to reheat. I remembered one of them set the timer on 1:30 mins. So I set it to that and waited. As the beep sound appears, and one of the heads return. I told him about the brownie, and as he opened it...the brownie was sizzling, and smoke was coming out. It was supposed to be only for 30 seconds. But, instead of him fuming, and me getting depressed, we started laughing out loud. Come on, it was bloody stupid, but funny. The other crew started running in from the back, checking to see what had happened, the head told them and they also started laughing. They were scolding me in a good natured and friendly way, laughing, while telling me next time, be on the safe side and if your not sure, just set it to 30 seconds.

Moral of the story: Don't Assume you remember unless you remember it clearly. Mistakes happen mate, don't sweat about it. If the Chef scolds you hard for doing such a stupid thing, don't take it personally, it's just there for you to learn. Learn from your Mistakes of course as everyone says it.

I also had a Mexican Item Attack, lots of Mexican orders came flying in when I was stationed in the cold kitchen, it was hell.

Anyways, I gtg, write about something else some other time, chiowz.

Boleh tahan ke?

Saturday, January 19, 2008
Fudge it. I came to effing early... again. I'm regretting the fact that I could've woken up 1 hour later, and not feel like a drunken shit at the moment.

Anyway, back to last night's conversation with one of the Commis in Prego. He mentioned that once a long time ago (dunno how long), Chef Wan's son used to worked in Prego. Formerly he was an Executice Sous Chef in another restaurant, but when he moved to Prego, he was only a Commis I/II. It's easy to get promoted in a restaurant, but usually the title is wortless in a hotel because the standard is higher.

Anyway, guess how long he lasted?






Haha!! Westin has a high turnover of employees because of the workload. Many apply for jobs, and get but not many last through the first few weeks. Especially in Prego. There was a Commis who said he was a Malaysian but worked in Finland for a few year in the banquet kitchen. And guess what? Surprise surprise he quit after 3 days. Heck, he didn't even know what saffron is.


Many of them are CDP, Sous Chef, Banquet etc but once they enter Prego, it seems they always quit as soon as they could. Goes to show how much people can only take even if their names are full of titles.

No use, those titles.

I know...I know

Friday, January 18, 2008
I know what you mean Maynard. Cooking again really makes one do things 10 times better, It lights back the fire in ones-self. Basically, I didn't cook, I just made. I was relocated to the cold kitchen because of the short handed staff today(2 were having their off day and the head chef for this outlet was sent to another outlet to help) Even though "The Chef" was there, it was hard.

First off, it started with the lunch service, the usual boring service. It was packed, downstairs was full so they had to send people upstairs, orders were just flying in and the kitchen was like what it's supposed to be. Noisy, Hot, with lots of movement, and excitement. And me in Cold Kitchen assigned to make the Maxican Items. It was great. I was going and going, finally keeping up with the pace. Plate settings were up, orders were delivered, and I was finally happy and loving it like I used to in college(To tell you the truth, it really is shitty doing mise-sen-place, takes away your soul) And we had to prepare for the dinner b'day function, which means, overtime. But it was great still. Then came the dinner service, I felt so much pressure. Thank god for "The Chef" being there, if he wasn't, we were screwed. To break it into points, we had our experienced butcher in one of the hot sections, "The Chef" in the other, experienced Cold Kitchen Chef, an experienced multi tasker, and a noob trainee. And it went well, although it was really hectic. The multi tasker was in the hot section helping "The Chef" but the Cold Kitchen really needed help(Because of me I admit, It was my first time doing it) We were moving, I was moving alot faster now, "The Chef" was firing orders and taking command as he always has. It was fun and tiring. The Function went smoothly, except for the "Borito" turning into an "Echiladas" bit(My Fault, I didn't roll it properly, it wasn't supposed to be flat, didn't know that, Ooops) We were laughing about it after work.

What did I learn today?
1)Mexican Items settings

2)How hot it should be when you heat the item up for usage
3)How to enjoy a break
4)How great cooking is
5)How to Make Guacamole
6)How to Make Salsa

7)How to Cut Fast
8)How to ask questions whenever and wherever

9)How essential harmonization is in a kitchen

Ok, till next time then, chiowz.

Am lovin' it

I worked at the pizza station today!! Eventhough it was busy night with 6 pizzas coming in at a time, the guy managed to kep patient at my fumbling efforts to not tear the pizza base or wrinkle it. He made me a special one where we sneaked to the back to eat so the Chef won't know. Hehe...

Suppose to follow Yi Lin home, but the dude wanted me to make the last pizza so I decided to use the train. My hands smell of pepperoni, mozzarella, gorgonzola, turkey ham and artichoke. Cooking again made me a happy person. The mundane routine of mise-en-place wasn't to much, so I didn't die again. Thank God THEY didn't come. If not all their mise gets thrown at my face.

Qutre Stigioni, Wow Supreme and Garlic Bread. Those are the only recipes I remember. They bake their Garlic Bread in the oven with a pizza base! Everything was mooth topday. Even the chef wasn't mad as usual. He was in a good mood with his jokes and laughs (though not with me).

And th edreaded 180 pax, nothing wan. It was buffet so we just sat there waiting to refill the inserts. So it was more or less chillin'.

To read about the dude... click here.


Monday, January 14, 2008
Oops so mise-en-place it is then(sorry for being a noob) (Two days off, there you go, your beautiful time)

Ok, Staff Outing was a blast. Downside is the Jam i've been through and also the morning call zzz. But the rest was great. First off, met in Sunway to have breakfast with the crew, after that we went to Sunway Lagoon. Had a telematch at the water park and went around trying out the dry park services. Basically we went on everything, the roller coasters were...ok. But the Pirates Revenge(The boats which goes up and down and higher each time it moves) was a blast.(Try letting go when you are practically upside down with a weight of 110 kgs, scary shit) After that we went for lunch at KFC(nothing much here) But then we went for a bowling tournament between outlets at the Bukit Jalil Club, it was so fun. We shouted, cheered, and even jeered.(I pulled a my leg muscle playing, and it really hurts when I sit down) After that we went to have dinner in the ballroom. Lucky Draws(Won a Hamper) Speeches, Karaoke, and the prize for the winner of bowling(The Outlet i'm training in won! Go Subang Gang!) I made a few friends. To wrap it up, it was good.

Dang, gtg sleep, 4 hours of sleep, loads of fun, and work the next day is really sucky. So till next time.

-By Jon

Ngik Ngik Ngik!

Its mise-en-place dude. Not mis en plas. Pardon for being kepo...

Just finished kitchen. Now waiting in the cafeteria surfing the web waiting for Han and Yi Lin to finish (tumpang them).

I can do most stuff faster now. At least I know what to prep and open in the show kitchen when I arrive. Get the bread from pastry kitchen etc. I do now know what is cannoli and how to truss chicken faster. The only spoiler is that I thought today I start at 9, instead it was at 10. Sigh, woke one hour earlier for no reason. At least I have 2 days off starting tomorrow. Yay!

But... *ngik ngik ngik!* This Thursday there's an event with 180 pax... Aiyoh... I can't imagine how it will be like.

I'm moving off to EEST next Monday. Sad. I finally started to become more closer to the people in Prego, plus I know where almost everything is. After moving I'll have to re-learn everything. At least it will be easier. (and I can go home early.. XD)

Anyway, Jon, I haven't found time to iron such minor details like the colour...

No off day for the lose!

Yepz, as the title states I basically have no off day. I do, but it's for a staff outing which I have to go, which means waking up as early as 6 in the morning. Woohoo! Question. If we play with fire, why is the layout of the blog blue? With Clouds? P/S Lam Lam Sucks =D Will update on the staff outing tomorrow. Woohohoho, excitement builds up.

Anyways, I shall now write about the days in Cold Kitchen.

Well, the Cold Kitchen is really kind of boring, EXPECIALLY when there aren't enough pax coming in. *sigh* But the mi sen plas is great. I was practically helping out the entire kicthen. Finish with Cold Kitchen Mi sen plas and off I went to help out the Hot Kitchen. Then back to Cold Kitchen again. Gah Tiring but nice. The pressure is really tremendous though when orders start flying in like race cars. It was like the time when 5 orders came in one shot, woosh, they were going so fast I couldn't keep up. Gotta get used to it. Oh oh, and I finally got to see the Chef-Restauraneur(The Chef of Chefs in that Restaurant) in action, my god, he is damn bloody good. He got 5 plates out in no time. And he was firing the orders not crazily, not with shouts, but just commands, encouragements, and a really commanding voice. But it's sad that he's not there everyday, he only comes for one day. Having 3 outlets really leaves very little time for a person I guess.

Work Work...Fun Fun...Tired Tired... And the cycle continues, towards the end of my time.


-By Jon


Sunday, January 13, 2008
I'd like to quote a member of this blog for my starting line.

"Unlike Miss LamLam who is enjoying herself and 11 p.m. comes in a blink of an eye, my comes a blink of an eye because there's so much work to do I can barely remember to be thristy, feel leg pains or even look at my watch (except occasionally)"

See how the stucture is almost the same? The first word is, anyway. I'm crapping. Pardon.

Start at 9 finish at 10.30 p.m.

Almost missed the FINAL train to Setia Jaya.

My so-called split shift of 2-3 hours is lessened to less than an hour cos' I have to do mise-en-place, and still I finish at 10 when if I didn't even get my 3 hours split, why should I be there for 12 hours, wait 13!! in total when they say it's max 10 hours and college states max 8 hours?

My head chef is fierce. He freaks me out.

I'm moving to EEST, Pan-Asian Cuisine restaurant that starts at 10 and finishes at 8, in exactly8 days. Thank GOD!!!

... but the people there are friendly even if they only sometimes show it.

LaMLaM's journey so far...

Hey everyone...thanks to May-May we have a public blog to share..(for dc27 only)...
This blog could be quite useful to our juniors..=p
Anyway..My training in Third Floor so far has been a joyous one..fun yet full of knowledge taken in..lol
People there are super friendly..and dont mind teaching us at all..(us meaning me n han)
It seems most of the seniors also enjoy visiting there every so often..so far i have met 2..
Its already the 3rd week there..time flies..everytime i go in its morning..then in almost in a blink of an eye..its 11 and time to go home..wow..
Now..currently in the pastry station, where i will be for approx. 3-4 weeks then of to the meat station..
One thing about pastry is that..we are always last to clean up..as we all know..desserts are eaten last of every meal..O.o
Sometimes when those customer wants to sit down and chat for a loooooooooong time..I have no choice but to wait..and in the end kena grumbles from my parents..(tranport)
Anyway..hope more Dc27 join into this blog..^^
Bye bye... LaMLaM..aka...Elaine..aka...Yi Lin

Functions...Hate 'em, Love 'em...meh

Thursday, January 10, 2008
Good day to you readers, well unlike Sir Maynard who had a 3 day orientation and is going to have 2 off days(Lucky Prick =P) I started straight away on the 2nd of January. First area of kitchen, Stewarding. In my days as a steward, I have come to respect people who have this job, for it ain't easy, their one hardworking group. Anyways, on my first day it was hell. First, I didn't bring a bottle of anything, so I couldn't drink any water during my work time, does dehydration mean anything to you? And furthermore, there was a function on that day, 50 pax were located upstairs which only took half of the upstairs space. So with that 50 pax, the rest of the restaurant was FULL. Plates were sent down by the bundles. It was shitty. Then on my 3rd day, I had to SOLO the stewarding, and on that fine day, there was a function of 30 pax. Great, Woopee for me, go Jon. But, fortunately, I adapted to that area, so the rest of the days were going on fine.

What did I learn in Stewarding?
1)Carrying Hot Plates
2)Clearing Fast

3)Being messy is ok, getting dirty is your job
4)The different chemicals they use to wash their plates, clean their floors, and etc.
5)How Scary the Chef-Restauraneur is

So, after my first week in the restaurant, I got upgraded to the Cold Kitchen, Woopee, it was my first day today and it was BLOODY boring. It seems that today isn't a favorable day. But I'm looking on the bright side, tomorrows Friday(D-Day, Armageddon) Fridays are always packed. And the usual slow lunch hour is reserved for 18 pax(Another Function Eep) So I doubt that it'll be boring.

What did I learn in a Day of the Cold Kitchen?

3)Cleaning up the kitchen
4)Why do they put veggies in ice cold water
5)How great ice cold water is for Red Corals but how sad it is for Butterhead Lettuces(Leave Red Corals in for a day and it becomes beautiful, Leave butterhead lettuces in for an hour and it breaks.)

6)How to make really nice Salsa(Mmmm,Gorgeous)
7)How to make really nice potatoes(Delicious)
8)The difference between a Rib Eye and a Sirloin(I know I know, but the Hot Kitchen is just 3 steps away and I had nothing to do)
9)How a professional butcher can make your day(2.5 Kilos of meat from 10 Kilos, No problem, cut, and there you have it, exactly 2.5 Kilos)
10)How to cut Capsicums without taking out the seeds.
11)Why Capsicums should be cut fast.

Yeah, I learn more in one day of Cold Kitchen than in Stewarding. Free time ROCKS!

Kk gotta sleep now, so till next time.

-By Jon

I'm not a virgin anymore *(never was)

Yes, I know the layout looks so... *toot*. But I have a job and myself to feed. Chewah. So who cares? The content is what matters.

First day of training. Let's see. I have a fierce chef who I may not understand that well cos' I don't know him that well. The first thing I had to do was make pizza dough with 3 kg of flour, a very sarcastic yet nice female cook who sorta put me under her wing, getting tiew-ed for wanting to go back after my 10 hour shift (which became 12) and almost cooking deep fried calamari (I was washing my hands to get rid of the excess flour before The Sarcastic threw it into the fryer).

Went to lunch hunting for Stevan (BDH dude) and Darren ( stuck in all day dining restauran which is the fancy name for coffee house). Ended eating alone. Did find Stevan though for dinner, who mentioned Darren was mourning his next 6 hours of kitchen. HAHA...

I learned:
Making pizza dough ( I can do it with my eyes closed now)
How good Prego's pizzas really are (eat your hearts out Pizza Hut)
Chop, chop, chop
Slice, slice, slice
Maybe I'm adorable ( A kid was smiling at me when II was peeling tomatoes in the show kitchen while the mum was pointing at me, oh gawssh)
To pre-cook mussels without getting rid of the hair cos you can do it WHEN you cook it fully.
Is this the life for me?

We'll see.

Personal. Instinctive. Renewal.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008
Miss me anyone? Haha *winks*

Ok, that was so lala....

I've just finished 3 days of orientation In The Westin Kuala Lumpur (I'm required to write out the full name, to sell the brand, you understand). Mostly felt like Form 4 orientation all over, except it was air-conditioned, we had canapes and kung-pao chicken with chocolate fondue and strawberries and fruits for refreshments. Cool huh?

Anyway, tomorrow I'll be starting my first day of training at Prego, the Italian fun dining restaurant of TWKL. The Chef looks fierce. Pray that I'll survive the day.
Back to the orientation. The Training Manager was very funny and he knows how to make things interesting. So his talks were ok. Plus we did treasure hunts, observations and stuff. We even had to practice this mantra...

Welcome to The Westin Kuala Lumpur
Where you are inspired to be your best,
Do you feel renewed today?

Yes-zaa! Instead of the normal, boring ol' "How are you today sir?" they've revamped it to suit their contemporary mood that Westin is trying to potray. It is a mouthful, and so far no associates have I heard uttered this mantra, so maybe it's just for orientation. Who knows?
But I really admire TWKL. It IS one of the most analytical and dynamic hotel that I've ever been to. They are trying to become a world class brand. And the only hotel in KL to offer 2 off days per week for EVERY staff.

I've mad enew friends from all walks of life and form so many places. There's this batch of Indo trainees also doing their training in the hotel. So yeah, this should be an interesting 3 months...


This blog is a document of our day to day woes and joys during Industrial Training. ONLY members of DC 27 are allowed to post in their stories. Those who are interested please drop a comment with your username for your blogspot account here or in my wordpress blog. I will add you as soon as possible.

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