A Black Box Challenge is an undetermined selection of
ingredients (similar to Iron Chef) from which infinite
combinations, preparations and dishes can be
created. I’ll help navigate through it.
Step 1 of learning how to cook…
is learning to taste !
Before picking up the chef knife, I’ll teach you some basics and many trade secrets to be replicated later in the day. Together through an in-depth tutorial, tasting and demonstration we’ll discover what’s really happening on each part of the tongue and why it’s important. If you’ve ever wondered why some things taste better than others, you’re in luck! I’ll open your mind to how different ingredients triggers aspects of your palate, translating into delicious outcomes. You’ll have a better understanding of recipes formulas and find confidence to come up with your own ideas when separated into groups.
This is great for team building or groups of friends as each team will have the same ingredients to cook from (with access to pantry staples). The object is to cook a dish that your team feels is the very best creation from the box. This box will contain no more than 8-10 ingredients; however they have been selected strategically to work well together (for the most part). The degree of difficulty is up to you and decided upon ahead of time.
Based on taste, I will determine the winning team. Looking for a balance of flavors, texture and eye pleasing presentation; everyone is sure to come up with something different. The winning dish should excite all five taste receptors, be cooked well and host a creative approach with one or more of the techniques I demonstrate. I too will be limited to the Black Box of ingredients in my demonstration, with which I will teach the fundamentals of not only cooking but tasting and understanding balance in taste. You’ll taste a completely unbalanced dish directly beside a dish with precision balance of SALTY, SWEET, SOUR, BITTER and UMAMI.
You to can create a synergy between ingredients
whereby the final dish is so much more
than the sum of its ingredients.
What Might be in the box?
Fresh Herbs, Seasonal Vegetables, Bone Broth,
1 Cured Product, Dried, Smoked or Fresh Chili Peppers,
Olive Oil (Straight From Italy), Wild Foraged Product, Raw Honey,
Living Ingredient, My Favorite Vinegars, and Always Surprises!
Oysters & Bacon
This course will be an appetizer theme. I will create one salad demonstrating certain techniques; furthermore, demonstrating two other variations utilizing the same ingredients but providing a vastly difference experiences. Notice differences in flavor when factors of temperature, texture and aroma are skewed. Emulsified dressing in front of your eyes; pickled vegetables to die for and perfectly blanched vegetables (being served hot or cold). Provided will be the knowledge, technique and base ratios to be translated to endless future recipes.
Sweet Pea & Crème Fraiche Agnolotti
Utilizing the same ingredients we will become acquainted with the ins and outs of pasta making. Our main focus will be onthe technique of rolling with an emphasis on the Agnolotti. Five or six pasta shapes will be taught and displayed.
Saucier – step-by-step building blocks to variations of sauce.
Dough 101 Basic recipe and shapes.