France on my mind
Ever since I took that riverboat cruise in Czechia last spring, French food has been on my mind. This was a CroisiEurope cruise with an itinerary designed by a French company that claimed to be the world leader in river cruises. The week-long cruise featured an all-you-can-eat French gourmet meal plan -- that's French food three times a day, every day, plus champagne, wine, and any cocktail you desired. If there was a foodie heaven, this surely must be it (see pics from the cruise).
When I returned home, I found myself cooking more French dishes than ever before. Then my intern Kat and I planned and taught a French cooking class a few weeks ago at Urbana Park District's Phillips Recreation Center. So now it's time to start thinking about a new French "deep dive series" for this summer at the Common Ground Food Co-op. This will be a series of three classes where we will survey all the deliciousness that France has to offer, region by region. We'll start in Burgundy wine country where coq au vin, beef bourguignon, and fondue originated. Next, we'll head south to Basque country where grilled meats, grilled fish, and lamb stews are on the menu, all heavily influenced by the flavors of neighboring Spain. Lastly, we'll taste the Mediterranean-influenced Provençal cuisine from the south of France where bouillabaisse and ratatouille were invented. Details of this new series of cooking classes will be announced soon!
That's a lot of recipes to test, so it's time for another pop-up dinner event where we get to try out some new recipes on folks like you and gather some feedback. Mark your calendars for Sunday, April 16, 2023 at 6pm for a very limited-seating French dinner with a three-course tasting menu. Details of this new pop-up experience will also be announced very soon.