Annie has won new fans in London -- discerning eaters who know what they like ... and don't like and are not at all shy about telling it like it is.
Read the article from the Telegraph:
The article generated quite a lot of interest in the UK and I am receiving several emails a day asking how they can order Annie's books. So we have now made Annie's second and third cookbooks -- Look and Cook with Annie and At Home with Annie -- available on www.amazon.co.uk
From what I could see over the two-day course, I believe Rick Stein's concept is that the whole morning would be a hands-on expeirence revolving around lunch, and one eats what one cooks. (Part 1 of my blog.)
The afternoon is spent with a glass of wine, watching a cooking deomonstration by the chef (usually a complicated dish) and students can ask many questions as they like.
It was Chef Andy who did the afternoon demonstration of two dishes: Merlan frit en colere (Deep-fried whiting) and Gratin of Seafood.
This November, my sons and I signed up for a 2-day course on 'Original Fish and Shellfish' at the Padstow Seafood School located in Cornwall, UK and operated by the famous chef, cookbook author and TV Star Rick Stein.
The two-day course explores the techniques and ingredients of handling and preparing fish, featuring many of the dishes that are on the menu at The Seafood Restaurant.
The exercise was to initiate my two sons, Jonathan and Julian, into cooking. I was not sure whether the experience would entice them into the mystical world of cooking, or if they would abandon ship after the first day. It was all a gamble, but I was willing to take on the challenge. I have followed Rick Stein's path for years and own a number of his cookbooks. In my heart of hearts, I placed my complete faith and trust in Rick Stein, that he would turn my sons into great cooks.
When it comes to puchasing ingredients for food, you cannot beat London's food market. The day I arrived London, I immediately set off for Borough's Market and went nuts over the variety of seafood, vegetables and meat.
I bought monkfish and clams at my favourite fish store, then cepe mushrooms (now in season), sea asparagus, flat leaf parsley, thyme, baby carrots............!
The monkfish was filleted by the fishmonger, and I used the clams to cook with the monkfish. Only the tail is edible with Monkfish, but the meat is delicious, tasting like meat rather than fish. However, you have to make sure all the membrane is removed or the fish will be rubbery when cooked.
The cepe mushroom is a true delight, and I simply stir-fry this with a few thin slices of garlic, plenty of olive oil and chopped parsley to finish.
The sea asparagus is blanched; mix in plenty of butter when hot. Needless to say we had a wonderful time!
By the time we returned to the Hotel, I was very tired. But I was revived by the warm greetings from the front desk Manager and the roaring wood fire burning in reception.
I climbed, with effort, the honey-toned wood-panelled, heavily carpeted stairs, and my spirit was lifted seeing the wonderful display of flowers placed on the antique table flanked by two equally antiquated chairs. It was like being in a stately grand home, oozing with elegance and charm. It made my climb to the first floor a lot more pleasant; admittedly my knees were shaking with fatigue.