A week filled with days to look forward to – a trip to a vineyard, first time making filled pasta, petit four day. I think this week contained highlights from my whole time at Leiths and made a welcome change from the struggle Week 4 had been. More days like this please!Spinach and ricotta tortellini is one of my favourite instant lazy dinners – boil for 2 minutes and boom dinner is ready. Therefore it was quite different to spend the best part of 3 hours making the above crab and prawn tortellini with a crab bisque. I’ve really been looking forward to making my own filled pasta and although fiddly, it was undoubtedly more satisfying than the supermarket option. Shaping is going to take a bit of practice but with results like this I’m more than happy to do so.Tuesday brought our first Leiths school trip! We all piled on the coach down to Plumpton College, an agricultural college with a vineyard and winery used by the students as they learn about wine, and then Ridgeview Wine Estate which makes English sparkling wine that has been served to the Queen. Before this trip I didn’t realise how much wine and sparkling wine England makes, and more importantly, how good it is! It definitely made a change (for the better!) from the museums and conferences that school trips used to involve. Even when our coach got stuck in rush hour traffic on the way home I didn’t feel we could really complain, and I’m pretty sure the 6 wines we’d tried that day helped that…Petit four day. A day I have literally been looking forward to since I first heard about it way before I even started at Leiths. And it didn’t disappoint! A day devoted to sugar and pastels in which we made (deep breath) rose marshmallows, almond & pistachio nougat, passion fruit pate de fruit, pistachio and raspberry macarons, amaretto chocolate truffles and iced fondant fancies. Cue the sugar high! The atmosphere in the kitchen all day was really relaxed and fun as our table worked together to bring the above plate together. I’ve tried making macarons before and they’ve never worked so it was super satisfying to open the oven and see ‘they look like actual macarons!’ much to our teachers amusement. As our teacher pointed out, at the start of Leiths we were scared of making a single sugar syrup and now we’d made a plate involving at least six – showing just how far we’ve come in the last eight months. Dividing it all up at the end of the day felt like dealing out a sweet shop and we all went home tired but happy….craving salt and nursing a sugar induced headache. Podding broad beans, shelling peas…Thursday morning felt like it should have been spent in a sunny field in the countryside instead of a hot London kitchen. The veg was for our gnocchi and combined with asparagus made a perfect Spring dish. I’ve made gnocchi once before and they turned out gloopy and grey so it was so satisfying to learn the secrets and get light and tender results this time. This dish, followed by a raspberry macaron saved from the day before, made the perfect lunch. Bring on week 6!