for Food

A Perfect Date Night at Sur La Table

I received a gift card for my birthday from my friends to attend a Sur La Table cooking class. While I was perusing their schedule I saw that they had a date night cooking class called Springtime in Paris. I read the menu aloud to Daniel and he was sold.

Here is the menu that we learned how to prepare. I don’t think it was particularly Parisian, but it was very tasty!

The one aspect of the evening that put this cooking class over the top was the service. The class is taught by a chef and helped by two assistants. When first walked in Gayle asked if we would like any water or coffee. The coffee at Sur La Table is rich and amazing. A plate of small crackers and chunky salsa were set out for us to nibble on while we waited for the class to start.

They asked Daniel and I if we had brought a bottle of wine and said they’d be happy to open it for us. They also said that Sur La Table class participants get a discount at CoCo Bar just down the way. So we went down and picked a bottle of Malbec. We’ve really been in a Malbec phase lately. I haven’t had a bad bottle of Malbec yet. They seem to always be perfectly spicy and smooth. The first word that I thought when I tasted The Show’s Malbec was “Velvet”. It was perfect for the evening.

Two other couples arrived and the district manager of Sur La Table also participated. The chef, Javier Flores, talked about being a chef at La Fonda on Main and he now works as a restaurant consultant. He then endeavored to make the menu of seared steak and tarts Parisian. Finally it was time to get cooking!

Daniel is ready to cook!

We started making the salad first by making the vinaigrette and mixing the salad together. Chef Flores also taught us how to hold a knife. Turns out I have been doing it correctly all along. The assistant Katie and the district manager even complimented my knife skills! Seriously, that made my night. I love chopping and using my knife at home.

We then prepared the potatoes for baking. While they were baked they said we could take a break and browse the storefront. It was really fun walking around the store with my apron on and a glass of wine in hand. I love kitchen tools. It was heavenly!

I snapped this photo at another visit, but you can get an idea of the storefront.

The chef came around and asked if we had any questions. I asked him what are some of his new favorite restaurants in San Antonio. He really likes Bliss and FEAST. Bun n’ Barrel on Austin Highway is a guilty pleasure. Finally, it was time to get cooking again!

I am ready to conquer the kitchen! This photo makes me laugh.

Next on the menu was preparing the strawberry filling and dough for the tarts. Sadly, Sur La Table couldn’t find any rhubarb, so we only had strawberries. Then we got ready to cook the New York Strip steaks and the Cognac mushroom sauce.

Mushrooms, Cognac, Beef Broth, Butter

One of the best parts about the class is that a lot of items are already measured and prepped. While you are chopping and dicing the assistants clean your cutting board and knife. They also clean the trash bowl out and make sure that you have every tool you need at all times. The service from the assistants was great. Katie was really personable and chatty.

We seared the steaks and deglazed the pan. I was asking Katie about the difference between non-stick and stainless steel pans, because I only have non-stick at home. It is her job to sell and she makes a convincing argument for stainless steel pans. She said that non-stick pans are only good for cooking eggs.

Finally, it was time to enjoy the steak and potatoes. We had eaten the spring salad with walnuts and Roquefort during the break.

While we were eating the Chef asked if I worked in a restaurant. Ha! No, we just really like food.

The strawberry tarts were perfectly sweet. It would have more amazing with a little fresh whipped cream.

Daniel and I had a great time. I was surprised by how much I already knew. I definitely feel ready to take a more advanced cooking class.

After class I asked Katie to show us the steel pans. I have always wanted one, but didn’t know much about them. My plan was to buy a cheap one at Ace Mart. The Sur La Table brand was on sale for 40% off and we had a 10% off coupon from the class. Daniel decided to buy my Mother’s Day present right then. Wahoo!  The pan is 14 inches and heavy. I LOVE IT.

 

After class Daniel and I walked over to the huge Barnes and Nobles at La Cantera and looked at books. Another passion of mine.

I got to have a fun date night with Daniel, I got to cook, had a great bottle of wine, AND I got a brand new pan. The night was perfect! :)

 

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