As you may be aware if you are a visitor to this blog, I was a very lucky tweeter who won a 5 day residential cookery course at Cook In France. This is a relaxed and friendly school ran by the husband and wife team of Jim and Lucy Fisher in the heart of the Dordogne region.
After speaking with Jim, who generously gave us a fantastic rate for my husband to join me on the course, we were booked for the first week in September. Cook in France is based at Bombel, a lovingly restored farm, with a modern kitchen and a mix of contemporary or rustic guest rooms.
The course begins on Monday evening which is a welcome evening, with a 4 course meal prepared by Jim, designed to meet the other people on the course, or as Jim affectionately calls us “his sous-chefs”.
Unfortunately due to a 2-hour delay on the motorway we arrived a little late. This meant we missed out on the starter of Chilled Tomato and Fennel Soup topped with croutons, feta, basil essence and black olive oil, a point which our fellow sous chefs delighted in teasing us with throughout the week, as they had all been amazed by the flavours.
We arrived just in time for the main course which was a Garlic Studded and Orange Leg of lamb which had been cooked in a waterbath for 4.5 hours after hours of marination, and was served pink, melting in the mouth, with oven dried plum tomatoes and a herby cous cous. Absolutely lovely and even my hubby who detests roast lamb, reluctantly admitted it was wonderful. (Thanks Jim, I can now cook with lamb at home!!)
We rounded off the evening with a vanilla panna cotta, served with a raspberry sauce, fresh raspberries and a Walnut Croquante biscuits. The panna cotta was a perfect jelly-like texture, though it didn’t appeal to all, I loved it and the hit of vanilla was gorgeous.
Over dinner we had a getting to know you session, as we were part of a large group of 12 sous-chefs, which I think is the largest number catered for, and one non-cooking partner. The lovely thing was it wasn’t a group of middle-aged women as my hubby had feared!! There was a good mix of age ranges and personalities from the hilarious 19 year old Sylva from London to Peter, the Northern biker, and George, a scot living in Amsterdam.
Then it was off for a relatively early night, so we could be up bright and early for our first day in the kitchen.
So come back soon to see how our first day in the kitchen went.
Au revoir for now