Tim Foolery

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Rendezvous Under the Star: Overview

I knew we had to take a cooking class, as soon as I heard JDE would be visiting Chicago. There weren’t many options since the Merchandise Mart location was closed for a private event. How frustrating.  We opted to take the class at the Lincoln Square location called Rendezvous Under the Stars – mostly because the times fit with our other scheduled events that day.

The class itself was outside under a tent with three gas grills and three Big Green Eggs (charcoal grills). It was very hot that day and the grills fired up and a tent trapping the heat made it a bit sweaty.  We made the following items, pretty much in this order, working nearly the entire recipe from start to finish before moving on to the next item.

The new skills we were learning in this class are: How to Set up Your Grill, Grilling Vegetables, Roasting Peppers, Determining Meat Doneness, Roasting Garlic, Grilling Fruit and Balancing Flavors. 

We actually didn’t make the dessert – Chef-instructor Michelle took care of that for us.  Over the next several days I’ll provide a write up on each item we made and notes on the skills we picked up in the class.

John and Ryan enjoying truffle salted popcorn.
I found my camera has a scratch on the lens,
hence the ghost in front of John.
Mike grilling fennel
John grilling peppers
Ryan steaming the skins off of grilled peppers
Chef-instructor Michelle segmenting an orange
Michelle chopping radicchio
Jamie segmenting our oranges – Great job!
Michelle showing John and Ryan how to chop parsley 
Parsley and orange segments for the grilled veg salad
Ryan working hard…to finish his wine
Ryan showing off his meat
The peppers are ready…where’s the pork?
The salad is done…where’s the pork?
Simple garlic bread preparation
Mike has his priorities right – equal parts cheese and bread
Finishing up the pork chops. The Big Green Egg is pretty cool
Our group just waiting on the pork…
John, Ryan, me and Mike just waiting for the pork to finish
Me and Jamie (yes, that is my cripple arm),
but it worked pretty well here.
No, Jamie is not drinking wine this class (she is 5 months preggo)
Surprise Mike – I’m taking your pic!
Michelle demonstrating the dessert prep, while we all eat
Final dessert – grilled pineapple with sorbet, balsamic vinegar and pistachios

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