15 October 2010

GUEST BLOG: Great bakes

By guest blogger RICHARD

I can be quite obsessive when it comes to organising things. Prior to hosting an event such as this CGF cookery course, I have to have it planned (almost) meticulously before I can feel at ease, and if I fall short I tend to worry quite overtly. I am pleased to say that for this occasion everything was tickety-boo. Nothing could go wrong: ingredients had been sourced, the recipe finalised and the schedule completed – I was happy. Natalie was to be my co-ordinator for the class and we had talked much beforehand. For my introduction to vegan moussaka and lentil bake, all I could think was, “Bring it on!”

On the day, Natalie had to pick up the equipment and me then take us to Chorlton High School. We arrived early and made our way to the Food Science Room. Never, in my day, did I experience such a well-equipped and pleasant classroom. There was plenty of space, tables, cookers and equipment for all eight attendees. There was no excuse for a shoddy display. We were soon joined by Caroline, who was a volunteer helper. Once we were all set up, we waited for our guests; and gradually they arrived.

And so it began. I can’t speak for Natalie and Caroline, but I entered in “showman” mode: gregarious and welcoming and a little extrovert. I recognised several faces and we all felt at ease very quickly. I introduced myself briefly before cracking on with the demonstration. I would like to think I was informative and helpful as I slowly guided everyone through the process of veg prep, making white sauces, and building and cooking both a moussaka and a lentil bake. Everyone pitched in and helped produce some lovely food. The group split into two and made their own white sauce, which was accomplished beautifully. The whole event was very informal, the interaction was great and everyone had a good time. Once the bakes were ready, we sat down to taste them and chat about the results.

Finally we were done. Everyone slowly dispersed and we finished cleaning up. All three of us agreed it went well, and seemingly so did our guests.

More photos from the Great Bakes class are on our Facebook page.

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