I TESTED AND LOVED | Hi everyone!
It’s been a while right? Well yes, I spent 6 months abroad and I had no kitchen to keep up with my blog… Well, I did have one, but with no gas to cook… Too bad right? But it doesn’t mean I quit cooking, on the contrary! I left for a traineeship as a cook in a 5-star hotel in Cyprus! And now I just got back to Belgium only ten days ago, but I already miss it so much that when my sister said: “One of my colleagues gives Cypriot cooking classes, do you want to go?”, I was like: “Oh yeaaaaaah, let’s go!”
The colleague’s name is Androula, who has been teaching Cypriot cooking for years at the Flemish cultural centre Gemeenschapscentrum Kontakt. Three or four times per trimester, fifteen or so participants have the chance to make baklavas, stuffed puff pastry, slow-cooked stew, etc., the way they are traditionally made in Cyprus. Real family meals are presented instead of typical recipes “for tourists”.
Last Monday, Androula kindly showed us some dishes traditionally prepared for Christmas Eve. The menu read as follows: cigar-shaped puff pastry stuffed with veal; lamb with quince, pilaf rice and Christmas salad; and chocolate-coated dried prunes. Sounds delicious right? So how does it go concretely?
When there is a lot of preparation with slow and long cooking, for example, Androula makes some preparation in advance (cutting dried fruit, pitting dried prunes, preparing the stuffing, etc) and explains us what has already been done. Tasks done by participants include stuffing, rolling and cooking the puff pastry, or filling dried prunes with walnuts then coating them with chocolate. Slow cooking is launched at the beginning of the workshop to make sure there is enough time at the end of the class to share the meal.
Many attendees are regular participants and already know each other. There is a very friendly, fun and loose atmosphere. A copy of all recipes is handed over to each participant and the location boasts a real professional kitchen with all necessary appliances. There is a dedicated room with tables and chairs to enjoy the tasting at the end of the workshop.
Below are practical details and photos of last workshop:
Location: Gemeenschapscentrum Kontakt in Woluwé-Saint-Pierre, Brussels