Thursday, August 28, 2008

New Orleans School of Cooking

I went with my sister on this fun little excursion on our first day in New Orleans. It was only $24 for a 2 hour long cooking class, including lunch (and Abita!). I can you pass that up! We walked in and were greeted by the teacher, a great home cook and New Orleans native. There were about 15 of us in the class, from all over the place...from Charleston all the way to France.

As our teacher was explaining some history...we were brought some home-made biscuits. There was a strange brown syrup served with them...which turned out to be Cane Syrup. We drizzled this on the biscuits. It was so good! It had a honey-like consistency, but none of the flowery honey aftertaste. I wanted to buy some but I couldn't find any.

After devouring the biscuit...I looked at the menu and it looked wonderful. For class they were cooking Chicken Andouille Gumbo, Jambalaya, Pralines and Pina Colada Bread Pudding (I'm SO sorry I don't have pics of these! I was so hungry I forgot to take pics). She made the bread pudding first because it had to cook a while. It seemed really simple to make. She then made the pralines because they needed to cool. She made the gumbo and jambalaya next. A few of us got up to try it just before it was ready. It was so great to learn all the great techniques.

Now time to eat! They passed us a bowl of gumbo and jambalaya. The gumbo was the best I have ever had. It was not too thick, more like a soup. At first glance I thought maybe it should be thicker...but once I tasted it I realized it was perfect! You could taste the garlic, andouille, and chicken, all in perfect portions. The broth was so rich and well seasoned. Everyone was going up to get seconds of the gumbo. The Jambalaya was good...but not as good as the gumbo. It was a little over seasoned. The bread pudding (again..bread pudding is not my all time fav) was a nice ending. The Pina Colada flavor wasn't overpowering, but I'm still not sure if it meshed perfectly with the cinnamon and nutmeg. Last but not least...the pralines...they were perfect. They were a little soft, with the right amount of nuts and sweetness. We were even lucky enough to take some extra for the road.

If you like to cook and you're in New Orleans...GO TO THIS CLASS! It is so worth it. The food and the learning experience was awesome. When I go back to N.O.L.A. I'm going back...they have different classes depending on which day of the week you go.


JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

That sounds like so much fun! I would love to do something like this one day! New Orleans is a wonderful place to visit!

Birdie said...

I love New Orleans. The food is so good!