Sunday, November 4, 2012

Class #2 - Sandwiches

Before cooking started we got some interesting instructions about knives from our instructor's assistant. He talked about the various uses for some of the knives he showed us, how to sharpen them and proper care. It was quite informative and of course illustrated our collection of knives are probably not that great.

REQUIRED CORRECTION: I was asked by our instructor who is now following this blog to make one correction about something I wrote in the post about our first class. "I do use measurements especially when I bake but sometimes on the hot food side you have to go by taste."  As she says sometimes people can be freaked out about being given a general "recipe" to make something without specific measurements. I know its hard to teach people or convey a recipe for something you've made if you created it by some of this and some of that. But I think people should try not to be afraid of cooking that way and experiment.

Ok, on to what we made in class. In addition to sandwiches at least one soup was made on this evening. The soup made by another kitchen was Spicy Carrot Soup.  It tasted good with a nice flavor to it. Here is the recipe: 

1-2 T. extra virgin olive oil
1-2 cloves fresh garlic, finely chopped
1 inch piece fresh garlic, grated, juice extracted
1 yellow onion, diced
Red pepper flakes, pinch
Sea salt
½ C. red lentils, rinsed well
6-8 carrots, diced
6 C. water
1 bay leaf
2 ½ tsp. , white miso
1-2 fresh scallions, thinly sliced for garnish

Heat oil in soup pot, add garlic and ginger. Saute onion w/pinch of salt until translucent, about 2 mins. Stir in lentils, carrots and sauté til coated with oil, 2 mins. Add water, bay leaf cover and bring to boil over medium heat. Reheat to low and simmer soup til carrots are tender and lentils are creamy, about 35 mins. Puree soup til smooth. Dissolve miso and stir into soup. Simmer for 3-4 mins to activate the enzymes. Garnish with scallions and enjoy.
Christina Martin   

Our other class creations included:

Now, before anyone asks what tempeh is here is the wiki definition:
Tempeh is a traditional soy product originally from Indonesia. It is made by a natural culturing and controlled fermentation process that binds soybeans into a cake form. Like tofu, tempeh is made from soybeans, but it is a whole soybean product with different nutritional characteristics and textural qualities.  Tempeh's fermentation process and its retention of the whole bean give it a higher content of protein, dietary fiber, and vitamins. It has a firm texture and an earthy flavor which becomes more pronounced as it ages. Because of its nutritional value, tempeh is used worldwide in vegetarian cuisine.


A comment about the reuben; I don't even like sauerkraut but I really enjoyed these.  I didn't feel it was a distinct flavor in the sandwich.

These were chickpea salad sandwiches which turned out to be one of my favorites, sans tomato. They really do remind you of a tuna or chicken salad sandwich. The "mayo" used was veganaise. This is a vegan spread we've come to be addicted to in their flavored (chipotle and garlic) formats. We have since made this sandwich at home.

And now for what our kitchen made on sandwich nite. When Aaron first did his introduction he made a point when categorizing his cooking experience to say he didn't burn grilled cheese. Christina held true to her word that first night and assigned us the grilled cheese for the class. But this was no ordinary grilled cheese and she basically had the recipe in her head. Our grilled cheese was on slices of bagette and included slices of tomato and avocado. Avocado I like, anyone who knows me I "hate" tomatoes. Yes very bad Jersey girl. I like tomato products just not the actual tomato. So I got the go ahead to make some of our grilled cheese without the tomato, yeah! They were difficult to cook because the bread was small, we were using shredded 'cheese' and the schools equipement is not always the best or most complete shall we say!

The 'cheese' we used, which I had wanted to try for quite some time was Daiya. We used the shreds because Christina thought they melted better. We used a combo of cheddar and mozzarella.  Before making our grilled cheese I took some of the cheese around for people to try. Some students in the class have never tried products like this. Most thought they tasted pretty good.  Daiya does make slices or wedges which I'd like to try.

For some reason our grilled cheese was not photograhped on the buffet table but I do have the candid, unposed shot of Aaron showing off his sandwich. I'm glad I tried one while we were cooking because they went so quick on the buffet table by the time we cleaned up the only ones left had tomato and we all know I was having no parts of that one!

Next class is TOFU, stay tuned for that all those who are afraid of it, I'm sure we'll make things that continue to be as we like to say "pretty tasty"!

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