August 2018 Class

August 2018 Class


One of my favorite things to do when I’m traveling, is I try to take a class with a local culinary expert. It’s the best way to learn about local cuisine, find good places to shop and get inspiration for new recipes and the blending of flavors that comes from discovering new ingredients. This menu is inspired by a trip to Italy a few summers back where I took a couple of classes, this one in Rome.

These recipes use the last of summer produce and are a perfect meal to enjoy on these final days of summer. Maybe enjoy them on the patio to soak up the rays, or underneath the shade looking out at your yard?  I hope you enjoy the taste of these last days of summer…. 

Here is what we are cooking:

Pasta With Summer Beans
Perfectly cooked pasta combined with crisp summer beans, sweet cherry tomatoes, and fresh basil. This dish is so colorful, with all the red, white and green, reminds me of a tasty Italian flag. The pasta and vegetables are tossed with some of the starchy cooking liquid from the pasta and Pecorino-Romano cheese that creates a creamy, yet light sauce. I just adore good pasta and this one is a keeper. It perfect for a light lunch or a starter for dinner.

Chicken with Fennel, Olives & Tomatoes
Nothing makes your house smell more fantastic than roasting a chicken. There is something so comfortable and cozy about coming home and smelling that aroma coming from the kitchen. As the weather starts to cool down a bit, I can turn on the oven again without fear of heating up the whole house, and this dish is a perfect way to end summer and can easily be made into the fall months ahead. The chicken is seasoned with fennel seed, which adds a savory subtle anise flavor. The addition of the onions, olives, and wine lends a slight salty sweet pan sauce, making this one of the most flavorful roasted chicken dishes I have prepared. I know you will love it.

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Summer Fruit
Panna Cotta translates from Italian to mean “cooked cream”. It is a molded cold custard that is just sublime. The first time I made it, my young son said, “It tastes like ice cream but doesn’t melt”. And he was right! It is so simple to make and comes together in just a few minutes. The hard part is waiting for it to set, about 5 hours. We are serving it today with some fresh summer fruit that we toss with a little sugar and liquor to bring out more of that great summer flavor. It a simple dish that is so elegant and sure to be a great way to end your summer meal