This past Friday 22 Master Chefs gathered at the Smith Warehouse kitchen to spice, season, and chop their way through to a state of the art, gourmet meal for all to enjoy. Well, maybe just the opposite occurred. There was not a “master” in the bunch, other than a few students in that degree program, but we did pull together a very satisfying meal.
As the second installment of the Duke Campus Farm Spring Workshop Series: Preparing for the Zombie Apocalypse, Darrow VW, a masters student in the Sanford School, and myself hosted a very “basic” crash course on cooking. Attendees included undergraduates in various majors, masters students and PhD candidates, and even a few alumni.
We began with a brief run through of cooking tools–knives, pots, etc–and their specific uses and techniques to maximize their effectiveness and, of course, safety. With 22 people in a kitchen at one time, it is very important that everyone is aware of exactly what their knife is cutting, and that it is not themselves or their neighbors;)
Thanks to the generosity of Emily Sloss at the Duke Campus Farm, our meal was enriched with the Farm’s lettuce, kale, and carrots. We graciously chopped these along with celery, onions, garlic, and mushrooms for the bases of what became our homemade pasta sauce, lentil blend, and fresh balsamic salad. Darrow shared a burn-proof rice cooking method and our organic pasta turned out perfectly al dente! We spiced our lentils with curry powder blend, our homemade croutons with thyme and our greens with our made-from-scratch salad dressing.
When all was done, all we had left were a few noodles and lentils, some dirty dishes, and of course all of our compost to send back to the farm. Thanks to all for joining us. We hope we have encouraged the joy of cooking in you!