I had a fantastic time at the NOSOC yesterday. What a great way to learn about the food of the area, why certain dishes are they way they are, what the history is behind each dish. Our menu consisted of Gumbo (the best you’ve ever had!), Jambalaya, authentic bread pudding, and pralines.
The school conveniently sells pretty much all the ingredients (sans fresh) to make whatever they teach you! I ended up with some wonderful Louisiana green chili sauce, some Cajun spices, some wonderful vanilla (with the bean in the bottle), and some miscellaneous things to take home to my daughter as well. I am going to attempt the jambalaya and the bread pudding at home on the weekend. I’ll blog the “as you go” pictures so that you can see how it’s done… or not! 🙂
The surly chef gave us a tremendous lesson in the area’s history and culture and how it all translates back to food. It is interesting, if you want to learn the history of an area find out where the food originated and why. I was fascinated. Between the French, the Spanish and the Africans, the flavours and influences of cultures created what we now have as Cajun and Creole.
Here, the surly chef (self-named) is showing us the final step in our four recipe morning – making a whisky (or hard) sauce for the bread pudding.
All-in-all such a wonderful experience. We got to eat everything up – and eat we did!
I’m heading home to Canada today and anxious to get back into my own kitchen. So, watch for the updates coming in the days ahead. We’re going to cook up some NOLA-style delights! Are you ready??