Participating in a cooking class throughout my travels is a little something I usually enjoy to do. It’s a wonderful way to understand about the regional lifestyle and delicacies, and to choose up a new recipe or two. All through my go to to Lecce (map), a historic city in southern Puglia, I experienced the chance to sign up for a cooking course at the Awaiting Desk, the most established cooking faculty in Lecce (launched in 2003). The faculty features week-extended classes, as perfectly as day lessons, which I opted for as I was only in Lecce for a several days. I knew I was in for a address but it turned out to be 1 of the most enjoyable, educative and immersive issues to do in Lecce!
There had been 4 of us at the daytime cooking study course that working day. We achieved Silvestro, the founder of the Awaiting Table, at Lecce’s major sq., subsequent to the city’s legendary amphitheatre.
Silvestro welcomed us and gave us a small introduction to Puglian food items and wines just before getting us to the fish sector. At the market place, he informed us about the various kinds of fish and their origins, and the greatest means to cook them. For our lunch system, he selected some fish and squid, which we would later discover to prepare and prepare dinner.
From the fish marketplace, Silvestro led us across the historic city centre, with its lovely Baroque façades, to the vegetable sector. The clean rocket leaves, artichokes, tomatoes and mushrooms were being a mouthwatering sight! We gleefully stuffed our baskets – I wasn’t the only vegetable lover in the team – and continued on our way to Silvestro’s cooking university in the metropolis centre.
Situated in a historic building, the Awaiting Table university, is both equally cosy and colourful. Filled to the brim with cooking publications, pots and pans and all types of kitchen utensils, it positive was a cheery sight!
We donned our aprons and acquired ready for our initially lesson: pasta! Silvestro explained the different kinds of flour applied, and that barley flour is commonly made use of in Puglia. As we kneaded the dough, Silvestro gave us the option of diverse pastas we could make. We voted for cappalletti (a pasta shape reminiscent of Mexican sombreros).
It was a fun training, making use of a glass to cut out shapes from the flattened dough, then folding them prior to utilising a bottle to create the ‘sombreros’.
Getting ready seafood and vegetables
Subsequent up, Silvestro launched the different varieties of seafood and vegetables we ended up heading to take in. He then gave us a masterclass in how to get ready artichokes and squid. Gosh, I experienced no plan how lots of steps had been involved in cleansing and planning these! Cleansing the squid was significantly tricky. It guaranteed made me respect the operate accomplished by fishmongers every single day to provide them completely ready-to-prepare dinner.
A crash course in Puglia wines
Silvestro invited us into the eating space when we had been accomplished. He proceeded to explain to us about wines in Puglia – one particular detail I learned is that, contrary to popular belief, Primitivo is not the most prevalent grape assortment in Puglia the most extensively-grown grape assortment in Puglia is Negroamaro. We then enjoyed a wine-tasting of three distinct rosés. Puglia is well-known for its purple wines so it’s no ponder that the most common chilled wines are rosé and not white (even though Puglia also makes, among other folks, a lovely white wide variety named Verdeca).
Cooking our lunch
After the wine-tasting, we were being invited, one particular by 1, back into the kitchen to cook dinner the dishes. I volunteered for the pasta dish: cappalletti, cherry tomatoes and squid.
When anyone experienced cooked their dishes, lunch was served. It seemed unquestionably mouthwatering! My favourites were being the grilled fish, which was refreshing and super tasty, and the artichokes and sautéed wild rocket. So mouth watering!
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I seemed all over and absolutely everyone experienced appears to be of joy and wonder on their faces ‘wonder’ because we could not quite think that we’d just well prepared and cooked everything on the desk!
The Awaiting Desk cooking system sure is one particular of the finest factors to do in Lecce! Inspired by what I uncovered at this Lecce cooking course, I handed on the classes to my children at residence just a week afterwards. We expended an afternoon earning pasta and had a wonderful time!
In addition to cooking classes in Lecce, the Awaiting table also organises week-lengthy cooking courses (some with yoga and biking) at a nearby castle. For a lot more data, check out out the Awaiting Desk programs.
Note: I was invited by the Awaiting Table to participate in this class. As generally, all views mentioned above are mine.