Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Pass the Port

Last week I took a cooking class at Sur la Table. I've only taken one class there before and it was with my friend Marni several years ago. I remember we learned how to dip chocolates. Haven't dipped a chocolate since.

The cooking class I took last week was from their Everyday Gourmet series called "From the Pantry to the Table." I loved every minute of it. What's awesome about these classes is that they're hands on and then you get to eat all the food you made. Thanks again to my friends who gave me the class for my birthday. I learned a lot, I got to eat a gourmet meal (more like two meals) and I got to take home some really great recipes. Here is the menu from the class:

Sauteed medallions of pork in a mustard port sauce
Herbed smashed potatoes
Porcini mushroom and red wine risotto
Pan-roasted salmon with a warm lentil and bacon salad
Sambal Shrimp with mangoes and couscous

And then our teacher thought we didn't have enough vegetables in our meal so she threw together a salad for us too. I was happy that my friend Dre wanted to come along. We accidentally sliced the onions and mushrooms instead of chopping them for the risotto, but it all cooked down to a mushy mixture anyway, so it was no matter.

I learned a lot. I learned how to slice properly (if I had a proper knife at home I could continue practicing that skill). I learned when adding broth to risotto, it should be hot broth, not poured straight from a can. I learned when cooking salmon you always start with skin down (don't remember why though). I learned what quinoa is. I learned something else, but I don't remember what it was.

It was two and a half hours of pure heaven for me. I love to cook. I love to make shopping lists. I look forward to going to the grocery store when I can saunter up and down the aisles with my cart at my leisure. I love getting the weekly ads from Smith's and Albertson's in the mail so I can see what's on sale and plan my meals accordingly. I love fresh produce and I love trying new recipes. So being around fresh and new ingredients not to mention professional cookware and cutlery was a dream come true.

I want to go back. I did buy some porcini mushrooms so I could make the risotto tomorrow night. Believe it or not I already have arborio rice and fresh parmesan. But it looks like I forgot the fresh sage and parsley.

Cooking is expensive.


Thomas said...

Wow - I am the first post and I don't even know you - maybe we should be friends . . .

Anyway . . . how fun is a cooking class. Do you want a nice knife for your birthday?

Is this blog an advertisement of how date-able you are? You love to cook. You clip coupons? It sounds like a good ad.

If you don't remember who I am I am Charlotte's Friend

laura said...

Hi Thomas! Of course I remember you from comments on posts such as my previous one.

If this were a personal ad I probably would have posted a different picture of myself. One where my hair is done and I'm not stuffing my face :)

So guys dig coupon clippers? Who knew.

Ilene said...

Sounds fun! Yeah, you did love a trip to the grocery store. I remember how you would go up every single aisle for fun. I do the same now when I go to the grocery store because that means I usually am without the kids. I try to take as long as I can to enjoy the solitude, not necessarily checking out any fun foods on the shelves. Forward the recipes.

I understand about dipping chocolates. I took a class on how to decorate cakes and well, I can't say that I have decorated any cakes lately. However, I take comfort that I have the skill, if needed.

Thomas said...

Guys love women who know how to save money on essentials. That means that there is other money to be spent on trips to Jersey ~ and other stuff.

No guy wants a woman who spends willy-nilly silly!

Joel said...

I'm jealous sounds like fun.

abel said...

Yum. Expensive but fun!