RICHARD Yee, a father of two from Penang, was the sole thorn among the roses who graduated from the inaugural batch of the International Certification in Patisserie offered by Taylors College School of Hospitality and Tourism (TCHT).
Yee, a former canteen operator in Penang, travelled to Kuala Lumpur every week to learn the art of pastry making under the apprenticeship of Chef Karam Godrei.
The 10-week course which was offered through a collaboration between TCHT and Academie de Toulouse in France was attended by 20 participants, mostly female working professionals including business executives and even a lawyer.
During the graduation ceremony held at the L'escoffier Restaurant at TCHT, guests and visitors sampled the delectable pastries prepared by the course participants.
Yee said the weekly trips to KL was worth the time and effort as he received thorough training in creating a mouth-watering repertoire of 60 varieties of cakes and pastries.
I took back my creations every week for my family and friends and received many compliments. I have no doubt that the skills I learnt will be put to good use in my future career, he said.
Chef Karam said the response from the participants was very positive and most of them were planning to pursue the advance level of the same course.
Over the 10-week period they learned to create a tantalising assortment of dishes including many varieties of cakes, cookies, sauces, creams and mousses, crepes and pancakes, yeast doughs and quick breads, he said.
According to the chief operating officer of TCHT Pradeep Kumar Nair, there is tremendous interest in this niche area of pastry making.
Through the introduction of this course, people within the industry can upgrade their skills. It also gives the opportunity for homemakers to set up their own pastry business with the specialised knowledge acquired, he said.
Kaladevi Kaneson, a housewife from Petaling Jaya who has been conducting baking classes for the past five years at her home in SS3, said the course introduced her to new recipes.
The techniques taught by Chef Karam were innovative and I will definitely use the knowledge acquired from the course to augment my baking classes, she said.
Another participant, Cindy Loh who works as a sales and marketing operations manager with a consulting firm said she joined the course as she was always interested in pastry making.
It has been a wonderful experience learning under Chef Karam and I also had the opportunity to meet like-minded fun-loving people! she said.
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