Savour 2007 (Part 1)
Well, I am sure there were a few people glad that this is overwith.. and celebrated the success of the event with their feet up enjoying a glass of wine.
And deservedly so. While I had few disappointments, they mostly had to do with concurrent classes and my inability to physically be in two places at once. Also disappointing is the fact that it was months ago and I have been trying to get out an update ever since. So to avoid any further delay, here it is in 'small bites'.
Saturday began with a class on San Francisco comfort food. Nancy Oakes and her husband, Bruce Aidells, led the class talking about comfort food, its meaning to them and how it is represented at Boulevard, her award winning San Fran restaurant. There was some couple banter (not the warm and fuzzy stuff) and the audience got a rare sneak peek of a talented, busy couple who never get the time to cook together.
Nancy's philosophy is to use as local ingredients as possible and her mussel recipe truly suited the local green-lipped variety. They tasted nothing short of spectacular.
Next up was a treat, Geoff Lindsay and sous chef Adam d'Sylva gave a captivating expo of technique and talent with a serving of dishes from Lindsay's Melbourne restaurant, pearl. The session led through preparation ending with the tasting. Contented ooh-ing followed the entrée (shown here - a watermelon marinated feta & sunflower shoot salad with a clear tomato jelly), mains and the dessert, a (organic) rose petal ice cream sprinkled with fine diced turkish delight served on a bed of pashmak (aka persian fairy floss), added the ahh.
(Note: Pashmak is available at a few NZ gourmet shops and here by mail order.)
I think I'll have to second the many in attendance who will be seeing Guy Stanaway either on stage or on telly later on. This 23 year old hotshot (he fully deserves that descriptor - look at this amazing achievement!) presents himself well and is unnervingly calm under 'pressure' of the kitchen. Makes sense. Guy's mum was a popular caterer and his father, a lawyer (or so I overheard). In any case, the culinary wunderkind surely and truly has a long career ahead of him. And his class focussed on a favourite, lemons! Savoury uses of lemons.. pairing them with some of the spices I like in a tagine and to garnish. A recipe for one of his dishes appears in this months issue of cuisine.