Good Afternoon everyone! So as some of you may know, I spent last Sunday in Marylebone at an Italian cooking class at La Cucina Caldesi (link here) that I received from my parents as a Christmas present. As I arrived early (the clocks going forward meant that a Sunday lie in was out of the question) the sun was shining and I was really excited and intrigued into what the day was going to offer. The class I was enrolled in was the ‘Sunday Market Kitchen’ which promises to provide a ‘hands-on cookery course where the preparation of a delicious Sunday lunch starts from the very beginning, with the chef taking you on a culinary journey through the flavours of the Marylebone Farmer’s market’. It didn’t disappoint and I can’t wait to show off the meals I learnt for family and friends over the next few weeks 🙂
I’ve given the menu we prepared below, but I won’t share the recipes until I attempt them again at home; I’ve got a feeling that they might not go as smoothly in my little kitchen as they did in the top notch kitchen we prepared them in last week so might need tweaking a little!
After paying a quick visit to Marylebone Farmers Market to buy some of the days ingredients, we returned to the kitchen, goodies in hand ready to start cooking! The day started off with a lesson into each of the dishes we would be preparing before we were all able to choose which dish we wanted to work on. I went for the Parmesan and Parsley fritters with roasted red pepper sauce to start with but we were able to swap and change as we went along to help our classmates out with some of the more time consuming tasks.
The kitchen table laid out with all the equipment and ingredients we needed – definitely no expenses were spared and the quality of everything we used was incredible.
As the day went on, we were stopped at regular intervals so that the chef – Stefano – could give us hints and tips that could be carried across various dishes in the kitchen as well as keeping us on top of where we should be with our cooking and what our dishes should look like so we didn’t ruin anything. This was a really useful stage as it meant we could make notes or photograph the meal as we went along so we had check points to refer back to should we cook the dishes again at home.
Chef Stefano giving us a quick lesson in how to brown off chicken thighs properly – we were all encouraged to give it a go after he had shown us how to do it.
One tip of the day – oven roast any left over chicken bones with oil, salt & pepper and serve as a snack – the meat on them crisps up similar to pork scratchings and once all the meat is off the bones, they can be used to make up a stock.
Bruscetta with Broadbean Pate
Croquettes with Ham and Smoked Cheese
Parmesan and Parsley Fritters with Red Pepper Dipping Sauce
Lemon & Rosemary Chicken with Purple Sprouting Broccoli & Kale Two Ways
Apple, Rosemary & Yogurt Cake
As we were busy cooking the lunch two of the kitchen assistants worked hard to tidy up our mess and transform one half of the room to this beautiful dinner table ready for us to eat the fruits of our labour complete with complementary wine, a lovely touch to finish off what had been a thoroughly enjoyable day.
I can’t have had a more enjoyable day and I would recommend La Cucina Caldesi for a great hands-on cooking experience that promises to teach you a new skill, meet some lovely people and give you a delicious meal!