I do like to cook but really don’t have much time to cook that much unless it’s for the supperclub. What a treat to be invited by the lovely people at Total Greek Yoghurt to a cooking masterclasses with Chef Paul Merrett.
Total Greek yoghurt has been working with Paul to create a whole stack of recipes for their new campaign “1000 Ways To Love Your Total”. Total Greek Yoghurt is a great low fat ingredient that you can use instead of cream, creme fraiche or mayonnaise to reduce the calories in your recipes.
So it’s mid morning when we arrive at The Cucina Caldesi Cooking School in Marylebone. We were introduced to Paul who is Total’s ambassador. He was very friendly not a bit aloof like some other chefs we have met. His enthusiasm for the product and the recipes really energised the group.
Our task for the day was to cook 3 courses with our teams. Our team just split up the tasks that needed doing and went off in different directions to do our bit. I think Paul found this organised haos very amusing as it’s nothing like a professional kitchen where everyone has their place. We were just winging it but it all did come together in the end.
For starters we made Fresh and Smoked Salmon Rillettes, very fresh, very delicious.
The main course was a Vegetarian Tagine made with Butternut squash, peppers and tomatoes served with a Cauliflower cous cous and Fennel Seed Yoghurt. Loved the flavours but as I hate peppers, this dish was a bit of a disaster for me. Would have been brilliant with the addition of some hunks of lamb instead.
And for pudding we made a very easy Orange, Semolina and Poppyseed sponge cake served with Total Greek Yoghurt and honey
Here’s our team:
The most amazing thing we learned was to make cauliflower couscous. This was made using just cauliflower florets lightly blitzed in in a food processor.
The cauliflower was then steamed in muslin for a few minutes and what resulted in something that resembles cous cous or rice but it was just pure cauliflower. This would make a great base to add other flavourings like roast vegetables and stock and what a fantastic way to add more vegetables to your diet.
The other discovery was fried spicey butternut squash (which tasted like chips). It was delicious and would make a great side dish.
While the last dishes finished cooking, the kitchen fairies reset the room wiht dining tables and we all sat down to enjoy the fruits of our labour.
I had a really fun day learning to cook new dishes and meeting new foodie friends and it was made especially fun as Paul was very relaxed, super friendly and very generous with the cooking tips.
You can find more recipes that Paul created for the campaign using Total Greek here .
Here is a video of Paul making another dish from the 1000 Ways to Love Total recipes collection.
Slow Food Kitchen was a guest of Total Greek