Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Perfect Christmas Gift: Maine Winter Feast

As I walked down the stairs at 6:30 a.m. on Christmas morning to make my way into work, I came across the most awesome gifts waiting for me at the door: a full size Dyson animal vacuum cleaner and a printout for a Central Market cooking class!

The vacuum cleaner was an awesome joint gift from Micah and his mom! This was the second year I got a vacuum cleaner for Christmas, I think Micah is trying to tell me something. The first one he got me was the Dyson DC59 (cordless). This little guy is great for our wood and tile floors - it sucks up the dog fur like a dream! The one I got this year was the Dyson upright. It's a dream! I can't even imagine going back to a "regular" vacuum cleaner.

Anyhow, while I loved the vacuum cleaner, I was REALLY excited about the Central Market cooking class. Micah chose a class called "Maine Feast" which focuses on, you guessed it, Maine dishes. Since Micah doesn't eat red meat, this was the perfect menu because it had a lot of seafood, more specifically, LOBSTAH! 

The class was a perfect Saturday night date. The class is setup like a classroom. It's not a hands on class -- they don't have you helping with any of the cooking.

The instructor is up there going through the techniques with several other people prepping the rest of the food. 

To our surprise, the class comes with two glasses of wine. 

To start, we had corn chowder. A very simple dish that is made really rich with tons of butter. I've come to the conclusion that my homemade dishes are not nearly as delicious because I don't use enough butter! 

The chowder was served with these biscuits that use Bakewell cream, which is basically Maine's version of cream of tartar. The biscuits flake differently and have more a tinny quality.

After the soup, we dug into the lobster roll! They didn't skimp on the fresh lobster either! We were surprised by the full-sized serving because at a restaurant, it would easily cost $15-$20 for a lobster roll (the entire class was $50/person!). Oddly enough, someone in front of us ate the bread but left all the lobster meat! WTF? Why are you even in this class?

After lobster, we had baked haddock with roasted veggies. Pretty simple dish that uses one of my favorite items, panko bread crumbs. For some reason, I don't buy firm white fish very often but I really enjoy haddock and cod. I guess I always veer towards salmon, tuna and gulf fish.

For the finale, we had blueberry pie with vanilla ice cream. The perfect way to end a lovely dinner! 

The Central Market cooking classes vary by menu and pricing, but we thought our Maine class was well-priced for what you got. I would definitely sign-up for another class!

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