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In this weeks newsletter we look at TheKitchenDesigner, Susan Serra’s ideas on designing green kitchens. The purpose of her blog is to to share her experience, perspective, knowledge and NEW information on kitchen design. So if you are interested in remodling your kitchen, check out her blog for new ideas. We also look at Alcohol in cooking in our tip of the week.
Wickedfood Cooking School News
Week 3 – 13 to 19 June
Monday 13 June at 6pm – Classic Lebanese dishes (R380pp). The cuisine of Lebanon epitomizes the best of the Mediterranean diet, which is highly regarded for its positive health benefits. This cooking class shows a selection of the most popular Lebanese party food including Hummous with ground lamb, Kibbi Naye and Deep-fried kibbi balls, Lebanese salad, bread pies and Osmaliyah
Sunday 19 June at 4pm – 30 minute meals class 1/1(R380 per class). In this cooking class we show you how to prepare 6 nutritious quick and easy dishes which include Thai vegetable curry, Chicken breast with feta and pasta, Chilli steak wraps, penne with a rich tomato vodka cream sauce, Fried fish with oven chips and Homemade burgers.
Week 4 – 20 to 26 June
Monday 20 June at 6pm – Classic Italian dishes (R360pp). Italian cuisine is one of the most common cuisines available all around the world. Learn to cook 6 hearty dishes in this cooking class, which include chicken liver crostinis, zucchini frittata, pasta with a clam sauce, Osso Buca, polenta and pannacotta.
Week 5 – 27 to 03 July
Monday 27 June at 6pm – Delicious winter Entertaining(R370pp). Cooking class to equip you with the skills to host a ‘No fuss dinner party for six’ including Roast tomato gazpacho soup, Ricotta ravioli, Grilled fish fillets and Warm lemon pudding.
Sunday 03 July at 4pm – Sweet treats – working with Chocolate (R390pp). Learn the secrets of working with chocolate in this ‘sweets treats’ cooking class, including decadent chocolate cake, chocolate truffles, brownies, choc chip cookies and layered chocolate mousse.
Green ideas for your Home
Designing Green Kitchens 101
It occurs to me that one of my “life philosophies” translates very well to designing a green kitchen. I’m one who tries to be aware, not only of black and white, but shades of gray in relation to an issue. The shades of gray give us freedom, flexibility, and choices to find the right path toward the right solution, in this case, designing green. It is awareness.
Once one goes into the world of “green design” it’s easy to become immersed in a world, not only of green products, but of ways to have a green lifestyle in general.
You can go down tha
t road as slowly and as near or far as you want to. I find that it is a journey. You can choose to be more “lite green” in your philosophy than “forest green.” Think of it as fluid. I am finding the more I know, the more I want to know, forming my own, personal, version of a green philosophy (which is often changing.)
Here are some easy ways to begin thinking green for a kitchen remodel. You can incorporate just some of these ideas to make a difference. Find your own shade of green! Today, I will only focus on cabinetry, appliances, and countertops. Another day, I will address other areas of the kitchen.
My intent with this information is to keep it simple. To offer an easy starting point.
▪ Resue/reconfigure, donate, or sell your old cabinetry, perhaps keeping some for storage elsewhere in the home
▪ If you are redesigning the cabinetry in your kitchen, look for FSC certified woods, formaldehyde free plywood, as a minimum criteria. You do not need to go with a completely green cabinet if it does not make your heart sing. Again, find your right shade of green, as this is one of your most costly investments in the project.
▪ Look for no or low VOC paints and finishes
▪ Look for cabinetry manufactured in a 500 mile radius
▪ Design cabinetry for universal design, maximum accessibility, or, multi generational use
▪ Select products which will be long lasting and durable
▪ Add in a recycling center
▪ Replace old appliances to gain far better energy efficiency
▪ Buy energy star appliances
▪ Seriously consider induction cooktops – fyi, the major, high end, cookware manufacturers have produced beautiful, new, cookware just for induction cooking. Induction cooking is 50% more efficient than gas or electric.
▪ Get pedal or sensor activated faucets
This post on green countertops will continue to expand. Take a look, ask your designer about your options, see samples, and then “beat up” the samples to check durability, as I recommend. You want to make sure your countertop can last decades! And, you really want to love it!
Find your own path to green. I do think this is an issue that is worthy of increasing your awareness about, absolutely. You know, with all the media focus on global warming in recent years, here’s my philosophy. Few of us are scientists, of course. I’m certainly not. But, my own perception of all the attention on this issue sways me to err on the side of increasing my awareness, as well as my knowledge bank, than the other way around. You’ll find the way that is right for you. I do need to advise you to beware of greenwashing. Always something bad comes with something good, it seems.
Tip of the week:
Alcohol in Cooking
Contrary to what most people believe, and that includes most professionals, when using beer, wine or other alcoholic beverages in recipes, a lot of alcohol is left after cooking.
Here are the facts from the Agricultural Research Service of the USDA (1989).
Alcohol remaining after preparation:
100% Immediate consumption
70% Overnight storage
85% Boiling liquid, remove from heat
Alcohol remaining: baked or simmered:
40% 15 min.
35% 30 min.
25% 1 hour
20% 1.5 hour
10% 2 hours
5% 2.5 hours
Knock Knock who’s there? Lettuce… Lettuce who? Lettuce in and we’ll tell you!
The Wickedfood Team
Wickedfood Cooking School runs classes throughout the year at its purpose-built Johannesburg cooking studio. Cooking lessons are run in the mornings and evenings 7 days a week (subject to a minimum of 12 people). The venue is also popular for corporate events and private functions – team building cooking classes, birthdays, kitchen teas, and dinner parties with a difference.
Our cooking courses are hands-on, where every person gets to participate in the preparation of the dishes. They are also a lot of fun where you not only learn new skills, but get to meet people with similar interests. For corporate groups and team building cooking classes, these events are a novel way of creating staff interaction or entertaining clients.