Monday, October 17, 2011

Farm to Table at Sur La Table

One of the great things that came out of the Romantic Homes “Give Freely” layout is that my work got the attention of someone at Sur La Table, and I have been asked to “guest chef” for a farm to table cooking series.  Am I thrilled, you bet I am! 

At the Sunday market recently, I got to talking with Raquel our market manager about the prospect of such a class in conjunction with a market tour.  I had brought a few sample foods for the Sur La Table contact, an “interview” of sorts, and before we knew it, there was a group of shoppers around the manager’s table sampling my goat cheese cheesecake and arugula pesto and Roman tomato sauce.  And asking us demurely, “so we couldn’t help but overhear…and…when exactly is this class going to be held…?”  We had six sign ups based on that tomato sauce and cheesecake!  Hey, maybe we are on to something?

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As we develop a format for Sur La Table to market as their own series, Raquel and I decided to start with an informal “private” cooking class and market tour.  It seems that many of our market shoppers are set on making their own gifts this Christmas, as opposed to “buying something.”  Our attendees will get a tour conducted by the market manager and me, which will be great as I come from a cooking perspective and she has the knowledge of all the farmers from the manager’s perspective.  Attendees will fill up their baskets and we will then head off to Sur La Table a short distance away for a seasonal and local cooking class~ 

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Raquel and I have said so many times, people need a little help to turn a basket of this….

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Into a classic French dish such as Blanquette de Veau,  This is easier than you imagine, and the best organic ingredients make it easy~

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The class will be hands on, in groups of four, and focus on the food as well as the presentation a table and display of gifts.  I came up with several dozen easy yet classic dishes without consulting a cookbook.  The first class will center on Holiday Gift Giving; you will learn all kinds of gifts that are based on Farmers Market ingredients, in most cases you can find the same ones at Trader Joe’s or your local grocer.  I will include many tips and ideas for sources for great stuff and showcase some of my French silver, copper and porcelain presentation pieces, as well as lots of stuff that you will find at Sur La Table.  Here, a scratch lemon-lavender pound cake for summer; so easy, delish, and not expensive; we will get to this in a few months~

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And yes, we will make the great Roman Tomato Sauce together.  I will show the recipes and ideas on my blog, but of course, there is nothing like being there; and if you come to the class you will get some great freebies from me, which are now in the works.  Even if you can’t be there, you will find some great ideas here on the blog; inexpensive ideas using what you have on hand or what is easily found.


The class will be held at the Carlsbad (San Diego) Sur La Table on Sunday November 13th.  Market tour starts at 9am and the class will start at 10am.  The cost will be around $100 for three hours, which includes numerous freebies and food from the class.  We will also have a December class, which will focus on Holiday Entertaining.

Please email me if you are interested in taking the class; and for my followers near and far, I will be posting lots of great information for you to learn what happened in class~

So excited, this will be sooo much fun!


  1. I am so thrilled for you Andrea~ I wish I could be there and attend your class~Sounds wonderful! :) Hugs, Rachel

  2. Ahhhhh!!! That is just the best!! Congratulations! I cannot wait to see!
    I would love to take your class ~

  3. I am so envious of all those lovely veggies!!! I especially love the white radishes!! They look wonderful and I bet they taste that way too. The cooking classes sound amazing!!

  4. Ok, let's see, how do I talk Mr. Decor into letting me go to CA every weekend? :)

    Love that tomato sauce. Can't wait to see what comes from the fall garden.

    Sweet boy has eaten pb & honey sandwiches everyday since we got back.

  5. Andrea I so wish I could be there with you!! Exciting beyond!! The dishes will be a gourmet delight.

    Art by Karena

  6. Hi Andrea, have been absent for a while,.busy busy...and just popped in to see great things happening to you! Congrats on the feature which is really lovely, and now this..super excited on your behalf! Looking forward to hear more as it progress. Much love Col-Afrique du Sud

  7. Wow, Andrea! I am so excited for you..congrats. Best of luck with the new venture.

  8. Congratulations, Andrea! This is very exciting, indeed!

    Looking forward to your future posts!

    Warm regards,


  9. Gee, wish I lived near your area. I would love to attend the class. Sounds like a fabulous time. But will look forward to your future posts.
    All the best.

    Sheila in SF