Over the weekend, Ryan and I headed to Atherton Market for a cooking class!
Ryan and I have taken a small handful of cooking classes together in the past and love the experience of preparing new-to-us recipes and enjoying a more interactive date night!
Typically, we’ve found that cooking classes divide participants up into groups with each group tackling one part of a larger meal. In Chef Alyssa’s cooking class, we were divided up into groups and were involved with the prep work surrounding every course of a delicious three-course meal.
I loved walking away from the class feeling like I could easily recreate everything on the menu at home!
Chef Alyssa is the culinary mastermind behind the classes presented by Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen.
Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen focuses on healthy and sustainable cooking and offers weekly cooking classes for up to 22 people at Atherton Market in South End Charlotte. (They will also host private parties, corporate events, girls’ nights, etc.) After Chef Alyssa kindly invited me to attend a class, Ryan and I signed up for the Paleo cooking class since we don’t cook Paleo at home and wanted to try something new!
If you are a local reader, you can see a full list of Chef Alyssa’s upcoming classes here. I think the French Cuisine Date Night and Quick and Healthy Weeknight Meals classes sound like so much fun!
I’m so glad we selected the class we did because everything was fantastic! When we arrived, we were treated to a small Paleo appetizer of ginger pork that was so flavorful!
Right off the bat, we knew we were in for a delicious night ahead!
Ryan and I joined another couple at table one where the four of us quickly hit it off and chatted away while waiting for the class to begin.
Chef Alyssa and her team greeted everyone and explained the logistics of the evening to us. Chef Alyssa demonstrated the prep work involved for each of the three courses on our menu before turning the class loose and allowing us to work on everything in our small groups.
Someone from the Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen team was always walking around just in case we had any questions or needed anything, but they had all the supplies we needed available at our table and recipe booklets were provided to each of us with detailed instructions as well.
As Chef Alyssa demonstrated everything, she rattled off some helpful cooking tips, many of which I’d never heard before. For example, she suggested sticking bacon in the freezer before dicing it up to make it much easier to slice. And she recommended tossing chocolate chips or fresh berries in tapioca starch (or arrowroot powder or cornstarch) before folding them into muffins, as this will help prevent them from “bleeding” all over the batter and will keep them in place in a muffin rather than having everything sink to the bottom.
So what did we make during our Paleo cooking class?
Our first course included a cabbage and winter greens salad with warm bacon-mustard vinaigrette and a poached egg.
The entrée of the evening was my favorite and featured the flakiest coconut butter salmon served with creamy tri-color sweet potato noodles.
Dessert was a simple chocolate orange muffin that was, without a doubt, one of the best orange muffins I’ve had in my life! Our whole table commented on the fragrant orange smell and authentic citrus flavor of the muffins. When I’ve tried Paleo-friendly muffins in the past, I’ve found that they can be quite dense, but these muffins were light and fluffy and so, so good.
I had no trouble polishing off two of them and think they would also make a great grab-and-go breakfast option.
Thank you to the Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen team for such a fun and delicious date night. We had a blast!
Questions of the Morning
- Have you ever taken a cooking class?
- If you could taking a cooking class that focused on a special cuisine or dish, what kind of cooking class would you like to take?
I’d love to take a cooking class that focused on making fantastic sushi rolls! YUM.