Thursday, May 22, 2014

Cookin' with The Gringa from Ipanema

A few weeks ago my dear friend Annie invited me to her final cooking class at the U.S. Consul General's house and it was so much fun. Not only did I get to participate in the class, but I also played sous chef and helped with the preparations. Annie is a professional cook with her own catering company, the Gringa from Ipanema, and she hosted that amazing curry night way back when. She's been my gastronomy Yoda ever since.

The theme of the class was "elegant luncheon options from around the world." We started off with smoked salmon cucumber cups, which were very filling and basically carb free. We filled them up with a yummy lime wasabi cream.

We then made Vietnamese style vegetable summer rolls with all kinds of colorful veggies including homemade picked daikon radish, which was so good. 

We followed up our starters with our main dish, a pumpkin and ricotta ravioli with beurre meuniere, brown butter sauce with lemon. The pasta dough was really easy to make, the only thing is you got to beat the hell out of it without a pasta maker. Good arm workout. These were absolutely amazing and the best thing is you can make a massive batch and freeze them for a rainy day.

And for dessert we had strawberry balsamic financiers, which were delicious. They were buttery and sweet with a soft hint of roasted balsamic vinegar strawberries. FYI roasted strawberries with balsamic vinegar is AMAZING. I could eat just that with a big fresh crusty roll.

My friend moved back to the U.S. yesterday and I'm going to miss her terribly. I'm grateful that we met, became such good friends, and that I got to try so many of her delightful recipes.


p.s. My plan is to try out some of these recipes on my own. I'll obviously share photos and recipes when I do!
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