Cooking with Herbs


As promised, I am dedicating this blog post to recap my first cooking class at the Gourmandise School of Cooking.

Besides learning how to cook 3 incredible meals, I had the best time ever! I enjoyed every second of the class and kept thinking to myself, “I am so happy I finally did this”. I bought french fries next door to munch on while we went over the schedule for the day. Some people buy beers or even a glass of wine to enjoy throughout the class.

Checking something off my 2016 resolution list makes me feel accomplished. I’ve had a bucket list for years, and I never take the time to check it off. Moral of my story: set a goal, and go for it.

The class is 3 hours long, but you’ll never want it to end. Before each class, the teacher prints copies of the recipe for each student to have during the class. Despite the recipes being extremely detailed, I take a lot of notes. I basically write every tip down, so that when I try to recipe at home, I remember the steps in my own words. At home, you don’t have an instructor watching over you, telling you what you’re doing wrong. There is a lot of trial and error; I don’t expect to be good right away. There is a long journey of cooking ahead of me.


Chicken Ingredients:

1 whole chicken (about 4 pounds), quartered and backbone removed                                                                                                               1 tablespoon plus 1/4 cup  extra-virgin olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar or lemon juice
1 cup packed parsley or basil or tarragon (or whatever), chopped
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic (or a couple of cloves)
1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, or more or less to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees
  2. Pat chicken dry really well with paper towels and transfer to rimmed baking sheet
  3. Drizzle chicken with oil; season with salt and pepper. Arrange, skin-side up and roast until golden (or until a thermometer inserted into thickest part of breast (without touching bone) registers 160 degrees), about 30 minutes

Salsa Verde Ingredients:

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons salt-packed capers, rinsed and chopped
2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh mint
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 salt-packed anchovy fillets, rinsed and minced (optional)
1 clove garlic, minced
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 shallot, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Combine the extra-virgin olive oil, parsley, capers, mint, red pepper flakes, anchovies, garlic, lemon zest and juice, and shallots in a bowl and stir to combine
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste

Everything seems easy when you have a professional cook standing over your shoulder. I successfully made this meal and it was delicious. Now, lets just hope I can do it again..this time, on my own!

*Recipe is courtesy of The Gourmandise School*

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