{Paris Part 7: La Cuisine Paris Market Cooking Class}

Today was my market cooking class at La Cuisine Paris, I started the day bright and early and took the metro to the Marché Maubert, one of the oldest markets in Paris! There I met my two other classmates (hailing from New York City and Detroit) and our lovely instructor, Camille. We toured the market and were educated on how to pick the best seasonal ingredients…

These sweet goodies were all from an organic market. Although it’s quite popular in North America, France has only recently jumped onto the “organic” wagon..

Beautiful pungent cheeses in every shape, soft or hard, strong and mild..

After picking out our ingredients we walked about 10 min to the kitchen studio..we were lucky to have all this space since we were a small class of three (a normal class here can accomodate about ten people). I will let you know now, the order I was taking my pictures was kind of all over the place since we were making all the meals at the same time, so I’ve organized them by dish..

Me and a fellow classmate had expressed our interest in using fresh mushrooms in a dish, here are some lovely chanterelles meaty golden funnel-shaped mushrooms with a slight peppery taste.

…and a plump and woodsy porcini mushroom..

..cleaned carefully of all the dirt with a soft brush and chopped into smaller pieces..

..sautéed in a pan with a pat of butter and lightly seasoned..

..incorporated with eggs and cream to make a wild mushroom flan! Ladled into a large silicone baking pan and baked in the oven..

..coming out perfectly golden brown and nicely puffed up like a souffle..

..studded with lots of aromatic earthy mushrooms..

…this was so fresh and delicious, I liked the high ratio of mushroom to the egg mixture, it really allowed you to enjoy the lovely textures and flavours of the feature ingredient..

Next we gently removed the outer leaves of these two baby purple artichokes..

..till we reached the tender meaty heart..they looked like two beautiful rose bulbs when we were done.. rubbed generously with lemon juice so they do not brown..

..cut into thin slices and marinated in a mixture of olive oil, orange juice and s&p..

…we then shaved a fennel bulb on this heavy duty metal mandoline to get these paper thin petals of anise flavoured shavings..

..mixed into the artichoke mixture and tossed in a handful of toasted pine nuts. This salad was so fresh and the perfect mix of citrus and crunch.

Next was our soup course, inspired by these bright orange potimarron squash (chestnut squash)..

..split in half and cut roughly into large chunks..

Seasoned with a mixture of fragrant autumn spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves and fennel seeds. Placed into a large baking dish to roast and caramelize on high heat in the oven..

When its nice and golden, put it into a blender with enough cream for it to come together into a thick soup..

…the secret ingredient to enhance the chestnut flavour came from this lovely honey table..

…we added a couple generous spoonfuls of this thick, dark and nutty chestnut honey to finish off the soup..

..to contrast with the thick silky squash soup.. some homemade croutons using this crusty loaf..

..toasted in a pan with some butter and fresh herbs till golden and crispy..

..finished off with a drizzle of cream.. this was the best squash soup ever. The flavours were so complex, yet it was incredibly easy to make. If you wanted to encompass autumn in a dish, this would be it.

For our protein, we picked up a few of these fresh red mullets..

…de-boned and scaled by the butcher and ready to be seasoned…

Incorporating the zest of an orange..

..and some exotic spices from their spice rack.. pink peppercorns, black and white sesame seeds, salt and pepper and a drizzle of fruity extra virgin olive oil..

..we cooked these at these last since they would cook in less than a minute.. I loved the zesty orange and the pink peppercorns, with each bite, the fish just melted in your mouth..

..served with a side of thinly sliced leeks..

..cooked slowly on med heat till they get crispy and caramelized..

..all together on my plate..

..we can’t forget about dessert, which I was in charge of.. I’ve probably eaten my weight in fresh figs during my stay in Paris..so juicy and plump and incredibly inexpensive since they are in season right now..

..for this dish we would be poaching them in these dishes..simply cut a crisscross halfway into each fish and add a few bits of butter to each ramekin..

..stuff them with pine nuts and add a drizzle of chestnut honey to each center..bake in the oven for about 20 min till their juices are released..

To contrast to soft figs…some crispy sable cookies..our instructors’ dad’s tried and true recipe..

..just flour, sugar, butter and salt.. cut with a small fluted cutter..

…I have to say these cookies are probably the worst looking batch I’ve ever baked…but I swear they tasted delicious..

..dipped into the sweet thick fig juices..

Lastly, we can’t have a french meal without some fruit and cheese…so we shared these gorgeous plump and translucent champagne coloured grapes..

…a small jar of artisan cherry jam

..to be eaten with this melty Saint Marcellin round – an ultra soft and creamy cow’s cheese…

…and this wonderful aged goats cheese…very strongly flavoured almost like a mix between an aged gouda and a parmesan reggiano.

…my portion x 2..

…enjoyed with a glass of white..

…a full day of fun and perfectly stuffed! I loved working with my fellow classmates and my instructor was so helpful and informative. My only regret is that I didn’t sign up for more classes here..If you plan on heading to Paris, I highly recommend this class – you can check out their schedule at their website here. They also offer a variety of other classes including a French macaron class, French bistro classics, choux pastry and many more.

…we even got a market tote to keep (in addition to the extra sable cookies leftover) 🙂

Stay tuned for my next post which recaps my birthday lunch at the 3 michelin star restaurant, Le Bristol and our late night boat ride on the Seine river..

Comments
7 Responses to “{Paris Part 7: La Cuisine Paris Market Cooking Class}”
  1. Lindsey says:

    Looks like the rest of the class was wonderful!! I’m the gal that stopped in for a quick bowl of soup (which was divine)! Hope the rest of your stay was just as lovely.

    • eatrundesign says:

      Oh hi!! Yes, I remember you coming in at the end of the class.

      Yes, looking back at my photos really makes me miss Paris. Ever since my trip I’ve decided one day I’m gonna quit my job and go to pastry school there. I absolutely fell in the love with the city!

  2. I also took this cooking class and it was the highlight of our trip! My favorite part was the shopping in the Marche Maubert. Chief Julie was also wonderful.

    I made a Shutterfly book, but your photos are really much better!

    http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=0AbsmbRw0at2Ts4

    • eatrundesign says:

      Oh wow! Your photos are beautiful! I love the market photos (I wish I had taken more), so colourful and fresh! What a great idea to compile on online photo book, your food looked amazing, especially the tarte tartin.. mmm…

  3. Camille says:

    Hi Jen, thank you so much for this post. Your photos are beautiful.
    Come back and see us at La Cuisine !

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  1. […] was my at home remake of one of my favourite things I made in my Paris Market cooking class here (chestnut squash […]



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