SERC Patisserie Students Immerse Themselves in Spanish Working Life and Culture

My name is Scott Hunter my chosen career path is sweet / pastry chef. My name is Alissa Johnston and I have chosen a career path in bakery and also in professional cookery. I just love food and that’s what I want to be doing. I decided to do the three month placement in Valencia because I wanted to learn more about Spanish culture and the way they make their food and more all the pastries and baking styles as well and it was fun. It was enjoyable. I decided to do the three month work placement in Valencia because I wanted to learn different methods and different ways of making sweets and different pastries and all the different Spanish pastries that they have in their country. The businesses we were after the three months of Valencia was Rosalind and D’Rita What they did was traditional breads sweets and patisserie with a Spanish twist on them so they would use sort of different ingredients for different things and fillings for traditional things like Panoria’s and bread’s I’m Paul Monahan, I’m a lecturer in catering and hospitality in Bangor and I’ve had the pleasure of teaching Scott and Alicia for the past four years on culinary skills and then more recently bakery and patisserie courses. I think this is a great opportunity for students to get away for such a such a long period of time – to be immersed in the culture to be living independently and working away from the home away from their families and an opportunity that should come along students should just certainly consider and take that up. The challenges I faced in the three months when I was away was the language barrier. 100% because it was kind of difficult, but we overcame them by the likes of Google Translate and hand gestures writing things out in the table. Now that I’m back I will be finding a full-time job, and I would hope to progress to own my own business in bakery or making cakes. Now that I’m back home. I will be returning to my job in the Ava in Bangor as sweet chef. Hopefully I will use my skills I learned in Spain to improve the sweets coming out of there. I would definitely recommend this experience to other students as it has helped me overcome some fears that I have and it’s just been a very very good experience. The impact this had on me as an experience as a whole was a very good one it’s gonna help my career a lot when I get older and when I want to open up my own business if I want to sort of branch out and do like traditional Spanish breads or sweets and Hopefully a wee bakery I’ll open up when I’m older.

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