Millennium Cooking Class: Easter 2013
Last weekend, I enjoyed an eggless Easter extravaganza at another delicious and entertaining cooking class at Millennium, San Francisco's most delectable vegan restaurant. Executive Chef extraordinaire Eric Tucker led the Spring-themed culinary celebration, highlighting the season's fabulous Farmers' market offerings. Some participants were following a gluten-free diet, always a good thing in my opinion, as the recipes frequently involve a fav tasty ingredient of mine, chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour.
Even though in claswe traditionally start off by making dessert first, we'll start this story with salad, more specifically with two Beet & Avocado Salad variations. Above, the architectural offering of spiral cut root vegetables over an Indian-spiced guacamole with a quick saute of cumin seeds, curry leaves, and minced garlic. The dramatic red sauce is a roasted beet vinaigrette, again with Indian spices (cumin seeds, mustard seeds, crushed cardamom pods, turmeric and chile), combined with grapeseed oil and balsamic vinegar. Thrown by that last combination of ingredients? You're in good company - I was too! But, you know, Eric knows a thing or two and it was darned tasty! The other group combined their Indian Beet Vinaigrette with grilled avocado, fennel, and grapefruit (pictured below):
Next we have two versions of edamame gnocchi with mushrooms, the version below used chickpea flower, along with edamame and potatoes, and was served with a side of stinging nettle-pistachio pesto, which was absolutely delicious. Keep in mind, you need to blanche those pesky stinging nettles to get rid of the sting, so use tongs:
The second version used fresh yuba (tofu skin) which may just be the most delicious fried food on the planet. Our group had the happy accident of including the green tea togarashi (side) ingredients (sesame seed, chile flake, nori, green tea and salt) into the edamame, but it all came out well in the end. A reduced Oolong tea, tamari and chile sauce was spooned on top :
A dengaku (Japanese method of miso-glazed grilled foods) of asparagus, mushrooms and spring onions, served in a lettuce leaf spoke to the Spring season:
English pea pakoras with carrot marmalade were our fried seasonal indulgence:
Dessert is always a vegan-fest at Millennium classes. This time around we made Strawberry Cashew crust tart with black pepper pastry cream (coconut milk, vanilla bean, agar), and served this with a Thyme Ice Cream (not pictured). Yum!
Thanks to Eric, Ann, Thomas & newbie Alan and, of course, my fab classmates for making this class another awesome cooking experience.
Here are links to my posts on my many previous Millennium cooking classes:
*Sept. 2012 Cooking Class
*June 2012 Cooking Class