The hardest thing about taking your vacations early in the year, is that you run out of vacation days mid year. August begins tomorrow and I for the first time in a long time have no trips planned this month. Rather than getting depressed about it, I've decided to make the most of my hometown, NEW YORK NEW YORK! I started my New York staycation this morning by taking a short trip to Queens to the home of a friend, Angie Hunter who started a catering company called "Party In A Pot". Angie is one of those cooks who can really "throw down", "put her foot in it" or any other term you would use to describe someone whose cooking is way beyond ordinary. Starting this summer Angie has been offering a five course cooking class that is custom made for each student and limited to two students per session.
Today I was the only student and based on my custom menu, the first course of the day was Cold Avocado Corn Soup with Cilantro Oil. Now, for those of you wondering about my capabilities, lets set the record straight, I know how to cook! However, there are so many benefits to taking a class like the one offered by Party In A Pot. For example, Angie goes over not only food preparation, but also produce selection, place settings, wine pairing, various food interactions, cleaning tips and even the correct way to sharpen a knife. I picked up so many tips and lessons that I plan to put into practice as I venture out and cook different cultural foods. For every trip that I have taken in recent memory, I have started a cookbook collection from all the different countries. I have yet to cook anything from the cookbooks, but its definitely a goal of mine for the upcoming months.
For those of you wondering how the soup turned out, all I will say is that there wasn't even a drop left in the bowl! It was AMAZING! With the mix of avocado, cilantro and corn, plus a side dish of crema, I felt like I was back in Mexico at a five star restaurant I ate at on my 2006 vacation. I will post pics as soon as I can so you can savor my culinary creations. In the meantime, if you are interested in taking advantage of Party In A Pot's Five Course Summer Cooking Classes, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Classes are $150 each and include groceries, personal apron, personalized menu, in-depth instruction, and tupperware to take home the finished product.
I left Angie's home today proud of myself for trying something that I would never have attempted to make on my own plus my own 'excess baggage' of goodies to eat. Have you cooked any international dishes lately? I want to hear all about it. Leave you comments below...