New Cooking Class: Summertime Grill Class from the Hills of Sicily June 2013
SUMMER GRILL CLASS FROM THE HILLS OF SICILY
Sicily has some of the most traditional food in Italy and some of the most rustic. Like most Italian provinces, they do not consider themselves Italians at all, simply Sicilians. Isolated as they have been on their own island, they are accustomed to doing things very much their own way, however antique or traditional it may be. In the villages all the old culinary traditions are very well-preserved...
Some of these culinary traditions date back to techniques, dishes and spices brought in by waves of invaders. Some were Roman, Byzantine, Islamic, or Norman. Some were Phoenician from North Africa, Spaniard, or Greek. Whether the origins of a dish are lost in history or not, Sicilians now consider it uniquely their own. They build fires of aromatic woods such as juniper, olive, and oak. Primitive grills on three legs or four are angled over stones and braced in front of the fire. The meal produced might be today...or 500 years ago or 1000 years ago...the flavors have the same magic.
Our first dish on the grill will be SPIEDINI D'AGNELLO AL PESTO DI MENTA. These juicy lamb kebabs with fresh mint pesto may come from the Greeks, although an argument could be made for the Romans as well. Whatever their source, the result is marvelous...
Next is ARROSTO DI MANZO AL MAGHREB. With this dish, there is really not much debate as to its origin: Roast top round of beef, cooked on a long, slow fire with a North-African style meat rub. This is one that traces its roots back to early Phoenician invaders.
Following that is POLLO ALLA GRIGLIA AL ROMARINO. On the other hand, this is about as Italian as it gets! Chicken basted in garlic and rosemary and grilled over a crackling hot fire! The skin is crispy and very herbaceous. When served with just a squeeze of lemon, it is simple and perfect.
Our next dish is FILETTO DI TONNO CON SALSA VERDE. This is a wonderful preparation for grilled fish of any kind, although the Sicilians pride themselves on the tuna that is caught of the west coast of Sicily as being some of the finest... This green herb sauce is quick to put together, but makes any grilled fish a sing.
Our last seafood is GAMBERONI AI FERRI AL VODKA. Sounds modern? Variations on this recipe have actually been around for about one hundred years... (Well, think how long vodka has been around.) These plump prawns are given a brief marinade in basil, vodka, and orange, and quickly seared over the grill. This is one of those dishes where less is very much more. The trick is all in technique with having the grill and fire just right…we will show you how!
Finally, we are going to show you three great salads: The first is VERDURE ASSORTITI ALLA GRIGLIA. These grilled vegetables have a wonderfully aromatic roasted garlic and red pepper dressing. Next is INSALATA DI POMODORO E LIMONE - a tomato salad with lemon, green olives, and onions. Finally, we have PENNE PEPERONATA, a pasta salad with green onions, and grilled red and green bell peppers.
When class starts at 12 noon, the Chef will have the grills going in our new Pergola Kitchen in the Garden at the Depot Restaurant. Together we will all work "hands on" -- grilling meats, seafood, and vegetables. Around 1:30 pm we will sit down together at tables in the garden by the fountain to watch the sunset and eat all of our creations and enjoy some wine. Class ends around 3:00 pm.
We look forward to sharing our Sicilian Grill with you. We think you will find that the recipes we have developed are easy to make and turn summertime outdoor dining into a pleasure. At the end of the class, besides having a great dinner, you'll take your recipes and techniques to add to your summer repertoire. Come join us!
SUNDAY JUNE 9, SUNDAY JUNE 16, AND SUNDAY JUNE 23 - 12 NOON TO 3 PM
The same class is offered three times, on three Sunday afternoons. Pick the one you prefer. Class will begin promptly at noon. (The doors open at 11:45.) Dress comfortably, bring a pen or pencil, and be prepared to relax and have fun! A sun hat and an apron is a good idea. A recipe workbook will be provided. Students who have attended in the past know it is important to come hungry-you certainly won't go home able to eat another bite!
Tuition is $100. The class fills up very rapidly. It is recommended that everyone call or email to inquire about class availability as soon as possible. Spaces cannot be held without a tuition form and check. When tuition is received, Gia will send a card confirming the reservation. After that, there are no other reminders. Please save the confirmation card as your reminder of your class. There are no credits or refunds within 7 days of a class date...as we will have scheduled staff and ordered food and wine for the class.
Call or email Gia if you have any questions at all.