Today was the closing of the Feast, the last of the four days, the sprint at the end of the marathon, it was Sunday. And now it’s technically Monday but no matter. We all remember what a Feast is? Four nights, eight courses, ninety or more people all served at the same time. Tonight we were actually short staffed and overbooked for typical Sunday Feast. So it was a scramble. But the scramble inspired this post. I shall now detail how we survive these four days of extreme stress.
MEDS! We all take some form of painkiller before coming in to work. I personally bring some extra strength Tylenol with me as well. Actually, I found this hysterical. We had ibuprofen on the counter in the kitchen. It was for a different purpose but funny nonetheless. And no, we were not drugging people with ibuprofen.
ENERGY DRINKS! Paul brings a Redbull that he drinks over the course of the evening. Helen usually drinks some form of alcohol when she stresses. Matt was downing green tea martini mix. Alma has ginger ale or water (she has ulcers). Ed has Powerade or tea. I drink nearly frozen it’s so cold water. It helps.
DOUBLE CHECKING! We have to count everything, plates, food, everything. Everyone gets two dumplings, everyone gets two shrimp (they’re big). So it involves a lot of double and triple checking. Messing up can be really bad, particularly when you don’t have enough of something and it takes a while to cook.
HIDING! For when it’s the end of the night, when you just want to go home and you choose to hide in the basement or the walk-in for just a little longer than necessary in order to cling to the last remnants of your sanity. Lack of sleep tends to take it away. It also involves making yourself scarce when the dishwasher (formerly me) asks: “Can you help me sort the cutlery?” Gah I hate that. The cutlery bin is filled with about as much garbage and food as it is cutlery. Gum anyone?
Aside from all the stress, I don’t mind Feasts. It’s pretty easy once you have everything organized. It’s the organizing that takes like... a week. But you just make a bunch of one thing, plate it on the right plate, send it out, start on the next one. It pleases my linear thinking abilities. And that’s all you really have to worry about aside from cleaning which doesn’t take too long.
I don’t know if this will make you hungry or not, but this is what we were serving this weekend.
It was the Feast of Champions (the staff are the real champions) so basically, all the favourite dishes throughout the year. There’s usually a salad.
- Thai coconut lemongrass soup (random aside, lemongrass smells really good)
- Chili garlic vegetarian dumpling
- Crispy tiger shrimp and Thai-lime sauce (that I helped clean... you know what I’m saying)
- Five spice pork loin with Sake black bean sauce and Jasmine rice (Freaking amazing!)
- Green tea soba noodle watercress pesto (which I know how to make but didn’t)
- Basa fish with pineapple Malaysia curry (which is more sweet than spicy I find)
- Coriander marinated beef and sweet pea in S&S garlic sauce
- Philippine mango lime sorbet (We decorated it with kumquats! I was obscenely excited about that.)
Tada! That’s a Feast! Anyone hungry? OH! Does anyone know why beef doesn’t turn brown when you cook it in a deep fryer? My suspicion is that it’s because it cooks from the outside in but it’s got me all curious. It just stays red.