Ran Out of Steam

Tuesday’s class was pretty tough. We only had two recipes, but they were both pretty complex and time-consuming.

Wow, hours later I only had that one line written…  very long, busy day…

Anyway, we made sauteed duck breast and braised leg with orange sauce as well as pan roasted quail with rice and sausage stuffing in a potato basket. Unfortunately we didn’t have time to finish the quail, which meant not only did we not get to present (looks very bad), but we also didn’t get to eat dinner. We fell behind so quickly, it was really a wake-up call. Ron was having some trouble butchering the duck (I probably would have too, had I been the one doing it) and then he had to prepare the sauce so that we could braise the duck, which meant I had to do most of the quail dish alone and there really just wasn’t enough time for that. So, after all the troubles, we didn’t even get to eat the quail we prepared, because we had to move on to the next recipe to make sure we at least got that one done in time. My dinner pretty much ended up being little scraps of sausage I didn’t need for the rice. The deprivation made me really grumpy…

Luckily (for my sanity) the duck came together as it should have and we finished that within plenty of time. Our duck was a bit undercooked for Chef’s liking, but it was still considered safe to serve and just the way I like it. Our sauce also was a bit too acidic and should have been reduced a bit more. Wasn’t a winning recipe, but it was much better, overall, than the quail, which was  a success to me.

Sauteed duck breast and braised leg with orange sauce

Sauteed duck breast and braised leg with orange sauce

Apparently not enough of a success though. I was so tired, hungry, frustrated, and emotionally wacky Tuesday night that when I got to Andrew’s I pretty much just crumpled into a pile of tears because I didn’t know what to eat. Um, hello! I had a ton of perfectly good quail and duck in tote. I think I just totally ran out of steam. Lucky for me, he was perfect and helped make me feel better–he even got me laughing a bit!

Yesterday I was still feeling a little out of sorts, and I really didn’t know what I wanted to have for lunch–until I realized that Potbelly opened on the concourse of our building. I’m not ashamed to admit that I just about sprinted there. I used to have Potbelly all the time when I lived in Chicago, and it was just seemed like such a treat to be able to have it in NYC.

I have to say that I was totally disappointed! I ordered my standard TKY and they informed me that they don’t have that item on the menu in NYC. Ok, but I wanted to know why. I politely asked why not and the manager, who just happened to be standing there, was like we dont have it on the menu. So I said I realized that but still was wondering why. He just repeated himself but added I dunno we just dont have it, corporate decision and was just so grumpy and rude. No smile, no nothing. Wouldn’t you expect something more along the lines of “Corporate decided not to put that on the menu here. Too bad, a lot of people seem to want that.” I mean…anything but what he did!

Turkey from Potbelly

Turkey from Potbelly

Anyway, I’m not sure if I didn’t enjoy my sandwich as much because it didn’t taste as good, because I had a sour taste from my interactions with the manager, or a combination of both. I think I’ve decided it was a combo. I asked for extra hot peppers (they are by far my favorite part of the sandwich) and there werent even what I would call a normal amount. The turkey also tasted more rubbery (I wonder if they get the turkey from the same distributor?). Maybe I’ll stick to having Potbelly as a special treat when I’m in Chicago–the NYC Potbelly just doesn’t have me that thrilled. Sad.

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