An Evening of Food, Wine and Learning with Connect2Classes and Eat Seattle
Celebrity Blogger Dawn Smith of Revel and Glitter Attended a Pike Place Market Tour and Cooking Class Meal Experience
One of my favorite things about living in the Seattle/Pacific Northwest area, besides the amazing scenery and outdoor activities, is the food! We are moving up the list as the “it” food and wine city, thanks to the abundance of wineries in Eastern Washington.
Combine that with my love of learning, the answer was a resounding yes when the founder of Eat Seattle Classes and Tours, Chef Liz McCune, and Connect2Classes invited me to attend one of her cooking classes. Cooking and drinking wine? That is my type of evening.
We all met at the the beautiful Atrium Kitchen in the Pike Place Market. Which I didn’t even know existed, in a building I’ve never been in. And I’ve lived and been coming to the market for over 13 years. The learning has already begun. Eat Seattle’s cooking classes consists of a tour through the market where Chef Liz and Chef Jay Midwood explained the local and seasonal produce they selected as the ingredients for our menu.
Again, an urban garden in the middle of the market that I had no idea about. It helps to supplement fresh produce already provided at the Food Bank and Senior Center and offers the market senior residents the opportunity to garden and socialize with each other. The public can walk through; there are beautiful views of the Puget Sound. But it is definately the first rule of the secret urban garden…nobody talks about the secret urban garden.
We head down to the bustling market to pick up a few items for our meal, visiting some of the chefs’ favorite vendors. The third thing I learned, truly ripe nectarines taste like ripe peaches. I like peaches…I don’t like nectarines. Apparently why, because I’ve been eating them all wrong.
We headed back to the kitchen, where we wash up and prepare for the festivities, including nibbling on Beecher’s cheese and crackers with a lovely glass of wine. I mention Beecher’s because a. they are local and b. I LOVE THEIR CHEESE!
The format is a combination of hands-on and demonstration to ensure that everyone gets the most of the teachings and those that would like to participate can do so. Which means you can jump in and help…or sit back and enjoy your wine. We all did both.
Yes, this is me gutting what must be the world’s largest heirloom tomatoes. They come in later for our meal starter…
Meanwhile, Chef Jay is giving us fabulous tips and instructions on the preparation of the menu; he was so informative providing tips on cooking techniques, info about the meal and and random Seattle history.
I learned so much information! For example, I have never heard of the tonka bean, that helped make our dessert. Apparently it is super-hot in the cosmetics world and can be purchased much cheaper through those avenues than through the culinary side. Much like nutmeg, it is toxic in high doses. And very expensive in small doses.
But what you really want to hear about is our gourmet dishes. All the ingredients used were sourced in the Northwest and 100% organic, and our meal designed to maximize those seasonal flavors. This is our starter, the before mentioned heirloom tomato, stuffed with a salmon rillettes with a truffle oil vinaigrette and edible flower petals.
Our main course, seared ling cod with potato, fennel, orange and mint salad.
We ended with the tonka bean sponge with strawberries, blueberries topped with whipped chantilly. That’s just a fancy way of saying when whipping the cream, you stop when there are soft peaks so it is still a little runny.
I had an amazing evening and although I was a third wheel, everyone there was a couple or came with a friend, the atmosphere was so inviting, I didn’t feel alone or awkward. There was so much to see and be engaged with. I am so bringing my husband for another class.
Be sure and follow Chef Liz on Instagram @Eat_Seattle on her food adventures through our beautiful Seattle!
Need more wine inspiration? Check out my latest post for Washington Wine Month…
Do you already take cooking classes or are you inspired to take one now? Tell us all about it!
About Connect2Classes — We are a marketplace for professional and life enriching classes, workshops, and learning immersives — connecting voracious learners with the best local expertise. In Seattle, Online, and soon in San Francisco!