This year I wanted to host a public Workshop Event where I could open it up to parents and their kids to learn how to make a complete meal from scratch. Something that had simple ingredients and wasn't complicated to make but required a little time and patience. I decided on Italian this year because it uses the freshest most simplest of ingredients with the biggest flavour impact and generally keeping in mind people's tight budgets these days.
I hosted my Italian Getaway Cooking from Scratch Workshop at the Depanneur in downtown Toronto and kids under 12 were able to attend at half price.
With the help of fellow Ambassador Chef Mary Hubert and one of the Depanneur's resident chef's Emily Zimmerman and a couple of my friends Linda and Martina to help me get things set up and ready for an educational and fun night where I was able to teach a group of people how to make fresh Ricotta cheese, a classic Italian Tomato Sauce and Ricotta gnocchi which everyone participated in hand rolling to produce enough for everyone to sample with the tomato sauce. I also showed them how to make a quick grilled asparagus side dish and options for making the asparagus. And to complete the meal I set up a quick Cherry Amaretto dessert bar where everyone could make their own Cherry Amaretto Parfaits in Bernardin Mason Jars.
In a fast paced 3 hours everyone was able to learn how to make a complete meal and enjoy their efforts at the end of the Workshop. I also had a raffle draw where a lucky winner received a basket of Jamie Oliver items and some things ready to take home to continue their culinary skills. Each participant also took home a Jamie Oliver cookbook which was generously provided by Harper Collins Canada and there were also some kids packs that included Sarah Elton's cookbook Cooking from Scratch and some great little Sobey's aprons and measuring spoons that were provided by Sobeys. Everyone was also able to take home a Bernardin Mason jar of some freshly made Tomato Sauce and if they didn't eat their dessert on the spot they were able to take their Parfait's home as well.
Everyone had a great time and learned a few new culinary tricks as one participant said he wanted to learn.
They were very interested in attending more Culinary Events at the Depanneur in the future and I think some will take the recipes that were provided at the Workshop and continue to make them on their own at home for their families. That's what Food Revolution Day is all about. Getting inspired by food and learning new things and passing them on.