I may get to eat really great food every week, but the funny – or sad – thing is that almost none of it really comes out of my kitchen. You don’t have to be one of my closest friends to know I don’t cook. Good thing I got approached by two ladies known as Pink Sparrow, who do cooking class-dinner parties, because I’m hoping to learn some skills for my new kitchen and new lifestyle.
It all started with a consultation meet-and-greet with the two gals, where I got to choose what theme I wanted to go with. After listening toÂ some of Jennifer and Christena’s suggestions, I went with Greek! Yes, it’s the most “Greek” to me in the kitchen – so I was excited for my friends and I to get a cooking lesson in the process of a private, fun dinner party.
In addition to our hostesses, we ended up a month later with a dinner party of 4 (I was alotted 5) and were taught basic kitchen tricks and knife skills. (Impressed with their tools, I also learned that I need to get myself a new set of knives.) And then, we set to cooking. Jennifer and Christena brought everything – including all the kitchen ware needed to cook for everyone present, down to the cutting boards.
On our menu:
Fava Bean Succotash
Yogurt Marinated Lamb Kebabs
Tapenade Crusted Roast Salmon
We started out marinating our lamb so that it could sit in the fridge during our preparation of everything else on the menu. Sean massaged the yogurt marinade into the meat, ever so thoroughly, beforehand.
It wouldn’t be Spring in Los Angeles without the L.A. Times Festival of Books. And it certainly wouldn’t be aÂ book festival without cookbooks.Â Held in Westwood PlazaÂ behind the Wooden CenterÂ on the UCLA campus, the cooking stage will feature author-chefs in demonstrations throughout both days of the festival. Included in the schedule are Los Angeles contributorsÂ to the Top Chef Quickfire Cookbook like Betty Fraser (Grub) and Stefan Richter (L.A. Farm) as well as Mark Peel (Campanile) – whoÂ is actually aÂ Top Chef Masters alumni but recently came out with a cookbook entitled,Â “New Classic Family Dinners.”
Peep below for the full cooking stage schedule:
Saturday, April 24
11Â AM – Lisa Lillien, Hungry Girl 1-2-3 12:30Â PM – Chris â€˜CJâ€™ Jacobson, Stefan Richter, Betty Fraser & Antonia Lofaso, Top Chef Quickfire Cookbook 2Â PM – Dave Martin, Flavor Quest 3:30Â PM – Alicia Silverstone, The Kind Diet
Sunday, April 25
11Â AM – Alice Waters, In the Green Kitchen 12:30Â PM – Anne Byrn, The Cake Mix Doctor Returns 2 PMÂ – Tricia Yearwood, Home Cooking with Tricia Yearwood 3:30Â PM – Mark Peel, New Classic Family Dinners
Great way to get up close and in-the-flesh with your favorite chefs – or vegan actress-turned-chef, whichever you prefer. Either way, the Festival of Books is well worth a visit this weekend.