Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Food

May 24, 2011

Wholesome Chef in Lexington; patriotic recipes abound

ASHLAND — Lexington's Woodland Triangle area will receive a dose of healthy cuisine training next month when The Wholesome Chef opens its doors, but you can 86 the intimidation. The Wholesome Chef is all about learning something new and having fun in the kitchen.

The Wholesome Chef is a collaborative teaching kitchen where students are introduced to recipes and ingredients that promote health and well-being on a daily basis. The space is open to all health- and food-related educators to share their knowledge with curious Central Kentuckians.

 "We're a teaching kitchen," personal chef and The Wholesome Chef owner Carolyn Gilles said. "We teach you about why certain foods are healthy and show you how to prepare them in ways that are accessible to the average busy person."

In the schedule, found online, clients will find custom-designed classes focused on health, nutrition, wellness, healing and delicious eating.

In addition to Gilles, this month’s schedule features health coach Paula Antonini and dietitian Genelle Hix teaching classes that range from kitchen basics like dicing, mincing and sautéing in "How to Boil Water" to homemade baby food preparation. Antonini will focus on lifestyle-changing courses featuring energy-boosting and weight loss snacks, meals and diets.

Class prices range from $25 to $40 per person and will include the use of organic whole grains such as quinoa, brown rice and millet; organic whole vegetables (seasonal and local when available); sea vegetables (agar agar, nori, hijiki, etc.); and organic natural sweeteners such as maple syrup, agave and brown rice syrup.

Gilles will host an open house from 2 to 5 p.m. June 4 in collaboration with her sister business, Bourbon & Beans: Marketing, Strategy, & Design. The new location is 507 E. High St., Suite 200.

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The red, white and blue holidays are coming up — Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day. Here is a recipe that makes use of the patriotic color combination and in-season fruit.

MIXED BERRY SHORTCAKES

2 pounds fresh strawberries, sliced

2 containers (6 ounces each) fresh blueberries

7 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided

Nonstick cooking spray

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

3/4 cup lowfat milk

Sparkling sugar (optional)

3 cups Vanilla DREYER'S or EDY'S SLOW CHURNED Light Ice Cream

Combine strawberries, blueberries and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar in large bowl; stir gently. Let stand, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450° F. Spray baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.

Whisk flour, remaining 4 tablespoons granulated sugar, baking powder and salt in large bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add milk; stir just until a moist dough forms. Turn the dough onto a floured work surface. With floured hands, knead 6 to 8 times until the dough is smooth. With rolling pin, roll dough into a 9 x 6-inch rectangle or until about ½-inch thick. Cut into six 2 ½-inch circles. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with sparkling sugar.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or just until golden. Transfer biscuits to individual plates; split open. Top each with about 1 cup berry mixture and ½ cup vanilla ice cream.

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This recipe, recommended for a brunch menu, is from chef Heather Hunsaker at foodonthetable.com.

GREEK PASTA SALAD

2 tablespoons capers, minced

2 tablespoons sundried tomatoes, minced

1 cup green olives, diced

1 (15 ounce) can black olives, diced

¼ teaspoon black pepper

½ cup French salad dressing

1 pound tri colored pasta

½ cup feta cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions.

In a large bowl mix chopped capers, tomatoes and olives with salad dressing. Add prepared pasta. Toss to coat well.

Chill for at least one hour. Serve topped with feta cheese.

Tips for brunch, Hunsaker said, include:

‰Keep dishes light, affordable and easy to serve. Choosing dishes that can be served at room temperature is another thing to consider. Typical brunch menus include egg-based dishes such as quiche, frittata, or breakfast casseroles.

‰Great brunch beverages include juices, coffee, and tea as well as alcoholic beverages, such as mimosas, Bloody Marys and sangria.

‰Serving the food buffet style is probably the easiest way to host a brunch.

‰Brunch is a elegant but simple affair so keep that in mind when decorating. Fresh flowers and light colors will keep things bright and cheerful.

Hunsaker is a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, but has been developing family friendly meals since she was 9. She is an avid crockpotter, too.

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While I don’t claim to be an expert cook, I do like to cook and love to eat. Readers are encouraged to send questions about food and cooking; I’ll try to find the answers. Also, if you’re looking for a specific recipe, send your request, or if you can offer a recipe to someone looking for something specific, please send e-mail to lward@dailyindependent.com.

 

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