Cod Véronique – crispy skinned fillets of flakey cod with the classic creamy vermouth and grape sauce.
Like a lot of Irish chefs my age I was classically trained. Any chef who’s been to catering college here might remember been thought some of the delicious famous French classics like bouillabaisse, gratin dauphinois, or bœuf bourguignon.
Learning the classics is a great way to teach young chefs how to cook. Not only do you learn how to make some great tasting food, but more importantly you learn the cookery method behind each dish.
If you know how to make a bœuf bourguignon than you know how to make a coq au vin or any type of stew. After you know how to make creme anglaise than you’re only a step away from creme caramel, creme brulee, or indeed any type of ice cream.
The classics are an integral part of a culinary education. They give young chefs a good foundation. Once you’ve learnt the techniques and methods behind them, than you can go on and become more creative with your cooking.
When it comes to fish though it seems I’ve not been a very good student. With the exception of bouillabaisse I seem to have forgotten most of the fish dishes I learnt at culinary school. One dish that does stand out in my memory is the classic sole veronique.