Monday, August 03, 2015

Cooking Vegas-Style at the PC Cooking School #GuidingStarsCA #PCStars


I love to eat, and I love to cook. So I'm not sure why I've never signed up for a PC Cooking School class before. I see the signs when I shop, and I have picked up the calendars on various occasions, but last week was the first class I actually attended. I don't think it will be my last!

What class did I choose? Vegas-Style Dining with Chef Christopher Pires. Chris was a great host and fabulous teacher. And the food was divine. This was a demonstration class, so we students sat and watched as he prepared each dish; we asked questions, and learned lots. And of course, as each course was ready, we ate!
Wedge Salad
The wedge salad is usually done with a wedge of iceberg lettuce. It is a classic salad, served with blue cheese dressing. In this case, Chris used romaine lettuce leaves, which give you little cups to cradle the other ingredients. Instead of bacon, he roasted spicy salami. I never would have thought to try this, but the flavour was great, and the crisp cold cuts were a perfect texture in the salad.

The main course
I admit the Rib-Eye Steak is what drew me to this class. The herbed potatoes and sauteed wild mushrooms were wonderful sides. Chef Chris walked us through all the steps, and served up this scrumptious meal. His advice - a good cut of meat needs only salt and pepper for flavour - anything else just masks the natural flavour of the meat. He's also fairly adamant that steak should be medium rare, maybe medium, at most.  I agree that well-done is a cruel thing to do to a lovely piece of beef.

Sticky Toffee Pudding with Creme Anglaise
We topped off our meal with a delicious, and not too sweet, sticky toffee pudding with fresh berries and creme Anglaise. Seriously. If you do one of these classes, be sure to come hungry. You really are fed a full meal.

The PC Cooking School holds a huge variety of classes, with different cuisines, courses, themes, and approaches. Want to get right in there? Look for a hands-on cooking class and get ready to roll up your sleeves. The Artisanal Pizza Party with Chef Alex Page may be my next class.  There are also special classes for kids and teens, or even birthday party packages. If you are looking for a very practical, short class, check your local store to see if they offer "What's for Dinner?" classes. These hour-long classes cost $10, and you will watch a demo, then receive the recipe, shopping list, and a $10 gift card to go buy your supplies and make your new meal at home.

I aspire to be a great cook, and although I'm already not too bad, I am always on the look out to learn more. These cooking classes are inexpensive (generally $30-$45), fun, and informative. And you take them right in the grocery store, so afterwards you are right on site to pick up the ingredients for your new recipes while they are on your mind. I can't wait to make our Vegas-inspired menu for my family!

And remember, while you are shopping for those ingredients, keep an eye on the stars - the PC Guiding Stars that is :)

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Loblaws. All opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.

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