By BobP

We braved the snow and headed to a cooking class in Paris just a few days after Christmas.  The menu was very rich winter fare – perhaps not what we should have eaten after gorging ourselves earlier in the week.

MenuCrème de potiron, foie gras poêlé, châtaignes et pain d’épice

   (Pumpkin cream, pan-seared foie-gras, chestnuts and gingerbread)

*  *  *  *  *
Dos de cabillaud rôti, mousseline de potiron et écume de gingembre

   (Roasted Codfish, pumpkin mousse and ginger foam)

*  *  *  *  *
-Tarte Tatin aux coings et gingembre, caramel au beurre demi-sel

   (Tatin tart with quince and ginger, caramel with salty butter)

On this occasion, I learnt a few new tips – how to cut an onion and avoid tears!  How to make caramel – hard or soft – and not burn the pan or start a fire!  how to properly cut parsley into tiny shreds without hacking up my fingers!

I’m not much of a fan of pumpkin, and there was a lot of that.  I guess it’s an acquired taste – I find it bland.  I also prefer cold foie gras to pan seared, so the first course was not my cup of tea.  But the codfish was lovely and the quince tatin dessert with ginger-caramel sauce was yummy.  For those (like me) who aren’t familiar with quince – it’s about halfway between a pear and an apple and needs to be peeled and cooked.  Quite good.  We sipped on a light Chardonnay-Condrieu mix (white wine) from the Rhône Valley along with the meal.

I enjoy cooking classes.  I’m a foodie.  One usually meets interesting people and everytime I’ve done one, I’ve learnt something new.  Going to market is also a great way to gain insight into a culture.  After all, we are what we eat, as the saying goes!  Markets in France are fabulous. 

If this tickles your fancy, do join us in Paris, Bordeaux, Lyon and Nice for cooking/market classes – in a group setting or fully private.  Courses can be in institutional schools, Michelin-rated restaurants and even in the private homes of top chefs.

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