What to cook this spring? We take some lessons from Dirty Apron
We updated this post from 2012 as it’s still so very relevant. Especially with spot prawn season starting this week! The Arts Club Theatre Company is known for it’s theatrical productions, but each spring they produce more than just theatre and host cooking classes. Each class is put on by one of Vancouver’s renowned chefs at a gorgeous private home and raises money for the company. Over three hours guests enjoy cooking demonstrations, some hands on options and a four-course dinner paired with wine. Unfortunately they aren’t doing these in 2016 but I hope they bring them back!
A few years back we climbed up into the British Properties and joined David Robertson of Dirty Apron Cooking School for a spectacular meal, complete with views, charming guests and left with some new cooking tips up our sleeves and a Dirty Apron Cooking School apron.
First course – Citrus Olive Oil Spot Prawns with Crab Cakes
Citrus Olive Oil Poached BC Spot Prawns
1 lb BC Spot Prawns (shelled & deveined)
1 Lemon (Zest & Juice)
1 Orange (Zest & Juice)
1 Lime (Zest & Juice)
6 cloves Garlic
Fleur de Sel
500 ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil (poaching)
Heat the olive oil slowly with all zest and citrus juice to 135F.
Season the spot prawns with fleur de sel and black pepper. Poach the prawns in the olive oil until just cooked through. Remove them from the olive oil and allow to cool.
6 oz Dungeness Crab Meat
2 tbsp Plain Yogurt
1 tbsp Chives (finely sliced)
2 sprigs Italian Parsley
1 sprig Tarragon
¼ Lemon Zest
Pinch Espelette Powder
Salt & Pepper
¼ cup Flour
1 Egg (beaten)
¼ cup Panko (coating)
Pick through the crabmeat and discard any bits of shell or cartilage. Put all ingredients into a bowl and gently mix together and season with salt and pepper. Form the mixture into two patties.
Prepare to dredge the patties by placing 3 bowls side by side. In the first bowl place the flour. In the second bowl whisk the egg. In the third bowl, the panko. Dredge the patties in the flour, and then dip into the egg and finely coat with panko.
In a medium sized pan heat the oil over medium-high heat. Carefully place the cakes into the pan and sear each side until the panko turns golden brown on all sides.
Serve immediately with a salad and Lemon Yogurt
1 cup yogurt
Mix the lemon zest and yogurt together. Keep cold until needed.
Chef Robertson preps beets
Golden Beet Salad
3 Medium Beets
1 head Frisee Lettuce
½ bunch Watercress
½ head Radicchio
1 Whole Apple (thin slices)
60 ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
30 ml Apple Cider Vinegar
Salt & Pepper
Place beet in a large saucepot and cover the beets with water by at least 2 inches. Bring to a boil; reduce to a gentle simmer and cook until a small knife inserted into the beet comes out with little resistance (about 40 minutes).
Drain and let sit until cool enough to handle.
Trim both ends of the beets and rub off the skins with your fingers. Dice the beets into 1/2 inch dice size. Toss the beets in a bowl with sliced apple, watercress, radicchio frisee lettuce, olive oil and apple cider vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.
Spectacular View from the private residence where this class was held
Sumac Roasted Lamb Loin on Celeriac Puree with Red Wine Sauce
2 X 4 oz Lamb Loin
1 clove Garlic
30 ml Olive Oil
1 Lemon (zest)
1 tsp Sumac
1 tsp Cumin (grinded)
1 tsp Coriander seed (grinded)
Preheat oven to 400°F
Coat the lamb with the marinade and marinate until needed. Before cooking, season with salt and pepper.
Sear in a pan over high heat until the meat is browned on all sides then place the pan into the preheated oven for 4-5 minutes to achieve a rare to medium-rare doneness. Allow the lamb to rest before serving.
300 g Celeriac (peeled & chopped)
2 Tbsp Butter
300 ml Milk
1 small Bay Leaf
2 sprigs Thyme
Place the celeriac into a sauce pan and sauté with the butter. Do not brown the celeriac. Add the milk and herbs to the sauce pan and bring to a boil. Gently simmer for about 25 minutes until the celeriac is very tender.
Drain the celeriac and discard the herbs, reserving the milk. Put the celeriac into a blender or food processor. Blend until very smooth, adding enough of the reserved milk to give a creamy consistency. Once the puree is nice and smooth then season with salt and white pepper.
Keep hot until needed.
Red Wine Sauce
1 Shallot (finely diced)
1 clove Garlic (minced)
80 ml Red Wine
80 ml Beef Stock
1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter (cold)
In a small saucepot sauté the shallots and garlic in vegetable oil until soft without browning, approx. 2 minutes. Add the red wine and beef stock and reduce to mixture to 1/3. Add the chilled butter, whisking in a little bit at a time and then season with salt and pepper to taste.
Strain the sauce through a fine sieve and keep warm until needed.
500 g Dark Chocolate
½ cup Unsalted Butter
330 ml Heavy Cream
Fresh Raspberries (for garnish)
Roasted Hazelnuts (for garnish)
Melt the dark chocolate over a double boiler. Add the ½ cup butter to the dark chocolate. Stir the chocolate until smooth and take the bowl off of the heat to let cool to room temperature.
In a separate bowl, beat the heavy cream until soft peaks form. Using a spatula, fold the cream into the dark chocolate.
Put a layer of saran wrap in the bottom and sides of the pan. Spoon the dark chocolate mixture into the loaf pan. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Remove from fridge before serving and carefully remove the pate from the loaf pan. Then slice the pate with a hot knife and put onto dessert plate. Serve with Raspberry coulis, fresh raspberries and toasted hazelnuts.
Diners Enjoying the night
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