Hi there. I’ve been flat out cooking lately (which isn’t that different to normal, now that I mention it) and I’m so far behind with things that I really wanted to have done by now – but there’s only so many hours in the day! Just trying to keep up with being a wife and Mum is sometimes hard enough in itself without all the cooking I do. But I guess we’re all in the same boat there – everyone seems to be sooo busy!
When I’m busy it’s really hard to find the time to do what I love – which is just cooking for pleasure. You know what I mean? Not the mad panic stations we go through each night to get the family fed, it’s the cooking I like to do because I just enjoy it. No time pressure, no clocks ticking, no-one looking over my shoulder, no customers to please – just relaxing, soul nurturing time in the kitchen. It’s easy to lose sight of how much fun being in the kitchen can be.
The number one thing I love to do in my kitchen that gives me satisfaction is making fresh pasta. I know I’ve raved on about it before, but it really is such a fun thing to do, and so rewarding too. My Lotto wish is to be able to hire people to do everything else for me, and let me spend days on end making pasta. I love just getting my hands in and going for it. Once you know how to do it, it’s so easy.
Last Thursday I got the chance to spend a day in the kitchen doing what I love during one of my Cooking Classes. It was so much fun. I met some really lovely ladies and had just as much fun as they did! After I lugged my gear there and set everything up, we got our aprons on and made fresh Ricotta Gnocchi (which we made gluten free) with a Sage Butter Sauce, Fresh Pasta Dough that we hand cut into Pappardelle and served it with a Pork and Fennel Sausage Tomato Sauce (note to self, don’t ask the ladies to push the sausage meat out of the skins without expecting a few giggles), and finished with Cheese Tortelloni with Roasted Tomato, Basil and Lemon (the recipe is here). The girls learned so fast, everything looked and tasted amazing! Yes it was a carb loading day for all of us, but we managed to finish in time for everyone to collect kids from school and hopefully go for a power walk after!
I love watching people make pasta themselves for the first time – it’s kind of like watching a little kid write their name for the first time. It’s that “whoa, I didn’t know I could do that” kind of look that really makes me smile. Sure there was flour everywhere, but that’s half the fun. I like to hand knead my dough and think it’s the best way to learn how to make pasta as you get to know how it should feel, and the best cooking is all about touching and feeling, tasting and smelling.
I really enjoyed the day, and it gave me some much needed fun time in the kitchen too. The best part was seeing one of the ladies in the shopping centre later on, trolley full of all the ingredients she needed to make the dishes at home. She told me she was off to the kitchen shop to buy a pasta machine. Awesome!
Happy cooking everyone!!