Two Day Crème Mission

This week in the Creme Kitchen was extra special. I have been so excited to tell you all about the fun I had AND the new friends I made!

I had the absolute privilege of being asked to host quarterly cooking classes for an Air Force flight crew based out of Offut AFB  in Bellevue. This crew works hard preparing meals on their missions. With limited space and equipment on their flights, they were ready to get inspired with recipes and ideas from my kitchen.

We started day one with a menu of Artichoke Cheese Squares for an easy appetizer or “snack”, a Kale Salad with a Warm Pancetta Vinaigrette, and a twist on an old diner favorite.~the Patty Melt. It has a french flair! Truffled potato wedges that were oven roasted were made next because who doesn’t like that on the side of a burger like that?? And then to end we made a delicious Carrot Cake with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Icing. The. bomb.

Kale Salad 

Kale Salad 

shallots and butter ready for caramelization

shallots and butter ready for caramelization

Yum

Yum

Working Hard Already

Working Hard Already

Truffle Goodness

Truffle Goodness

The Beginning Of Carrot Cake Magic 

The Beginning Of Carrot Cake Magic 

The Magic 

The Magic 

We ended our first day with the magic of that dang good carrot cake! It stayed incredibly moist and the brown sugar icing just melted into it. Divine! Now off to rest your belly and get ready for our next day of cooking! 

Day two we got into our kitchen groove quickly and started in on our new menu. I wanted to teach a class around breakfast and bread. And what better way to start then with a cheesy delicious Egg and Potato Gratin. We learned what “gratin” means in French and also had about 4 ways to pronounce it! ;) Next up was a Parmesan Biscuit Pull -Apart paired with a creamy Sausage Dipping Sauce. Tomato Bruschetta and Buffalo Chicken Garlic Bread used a french loaf two different ways. Both which were SO good and we got to use ingredients straight from my garden. To finish off a well rounded class we must end with a dessert right?? A layered Berry Shortcake was perfected two ways. And it was topped off by a homemade whipped cream and a sprig of fresh thyme. Can someone say adorable?! Oh yes and it tasted amazing too! 

Cheesy Egg and Potato Gratin

Cheesy Egg and Potato Gratin

Great job with the pastry cutter!

Great job with the pastry cutter!

Baked biscuit perfection

Baked biscuit perfection

amazing presentation

amazing presentation

Learning to “chiffonade” basil

Learning to “chiffonade” basil

Gorgeous tomatoes with fresh basil and olive oil

Gorgeous tomatoes with fresh basil and olive oil

working that buffalo cheesy goodness

working that buffalo cheesy goodness

Finishing touches on the Buffalo Chicken Garlic Bread

Finishing touches on the Buffalo Chicken Garlic Bread

whipped cream perfection

whipped cream perfection

Berry Shortcake with that whipped cream perfection…great job!!

Berry Shortcake with that whipped cream perfection…great job!!

We had such fun cooking together….which is what it is all about. Learning, eating, and laughing together over preparing delicious food in the kitchen. Thank you for the opportunity of getting to know you all and have you as my students-and now friends. I look forward to many more culinary adventure with you in the future!

A Birthday Celebration "Cozy Italian" Style

So we had two Paula's in the Crème Kitchen tonight... and one of them was celebrating her birthday! Now being the birthday girl, I of course had her assist me in the kitchen first. 

On to my Sea Salt Rosemary Focaccia Bread. Putting this bread and Herb Dipping sauce together couldn't be easier. The flavors blend together phenomenally. Such a treat to start our Birthday Dinner! 

If you've never fried cheese before, you should. The star in this salad is a pan fried provolone. Behind this star - is a slow roasted tomato. This tomato makes a flavorful appearance in our divine vinaigrette. The combination of all these flavors will surprise you. One bite and you will be hooked! 

What better way to define cozy Italian than with a savory, creamy lasagna. A combination of two cheeses and a slow simmering red sauce layered in between ruffled pasta noodles & baked to perfection. When baked individually each serving is piping hot & ready to enjoy! 

To finish the celebration... do as the Italians do! An amazing brewed espresso over a creamy vanilla ice cream brings to the table that perfect affogato. It's topped with whipped cream & a cookie stick - colored sprinkles for the birthday girl! No one left this kitchen hungry!  

Paula was treated to a rendition of Happy Birthday 'Crème Style' in four different keys at the same time ;-). We know how to end an evening here! 

Happy Birthday to my namesake in the kitchen! I hope you enjoyed cooking with me as much as I enjoyed teaching you! Now on to your chicken enchilada class (wink wink). 

Bringing Back Thai

Tonight's Thai Menu was extra special because I got to congratulate Veronica on Crème Club! 6 classes and going strong. So grateful for your presence in my kitchen. It's been a pleasure! 

Now on to our first course... Crispy Pork Spring Rolls. Ground pork and cabbage combined fills the inside of these crispy rolls. Dark soy is the key to the flavor. 

Everyone got a hands on experience with proper rolling technique. 

There is a secret behind the sweet chili sauce ... but I can't divulge. That's why it's a secret! 

After everyone enjoyed their yummy appetizer we began preparing the crying tiger steaks for the grill. Once marinated we get a good sear and let them rest. The crying tiger relies heavily on the dried chili dipping sauce. "It's so spicy it can make a tiger cry." A little bit goes a long way. 

We garnished with my homegrown cucumbers, cilantro, and green onion. Presentation is as important and the flavor. Both were amazing! ;-) 

Our final recipe is a common street food in Thailand; Pad Thai. This popular noodle dish is best prepared at home having all ingredients ready. Once your wok is hot it all comes together quickly. 

The flavor in this recipe speaks for itself. The garnish is just as important as the many ingredients in this dish. 

This was such a fun class full of new & returning students. I can't wait for another opportunity to have you all in my kitchen soon. I hope you made some new friends too! 

xoxo 

Paula