Desiring to learn new cooking techniques, I enrolled in Platt College’s Edible Adventures, a one-night, adult cooking class. They offer a variety of classes such as Chocolatogy, Louisiana Cuisine, and French Cooking Made Easy, along with themes such as Girls Night Out and Date Night.
I signed up for the June 30th Sushi Madness class since I wanted to make my own at home. Unsure what to expect, I appreciated the informative email I received a few weeks before.
That night, as I entered the commercial kitchen, the culinary students and instructor, Chef Doug Zimpel, welcomed me. A student handed me a bottled water while another instructed to choose a cooking station. My confidence rose seeing my station equipped with everything I’d need such as a knife, large cutting board, containers of ingredients, and a folder with recipes and a pen.
Our full class had a variety of dynamics — couples, singles, friends and a mother-daughter duo. An interactive class, I became acquainted with fellow amateur chefs as we admired one another’s rolls, shared containers of Sriracha mayo, and snapped pictures of each other’s creations.
Chef Zimpel was friendly, helpful and thorough. He provided an overview of tools like the Sashimi knife, how to make sushi rice, and how to slice the tuna. He sprinkled more tips and facts throughout class. I learned more than I could retain about the “secrets” to making sushi.
He personally helped me to roll my sushi since I was having difficulty with the bamboo mat. Fortunately, I conquered this technique by the end of class.
Tip: Ask questions since you want to duplicate recipes at home.
Although we started with a basic nori roll, we advanced to the sushi tower — something I’ve never eaten before. Then we made dynamite rolls, california rolls with the rice on the outside, nigiri sushi and “create-your-own-rolls.” They were generous with the fish from tempura shrimp, snow crab, spicy tuna and salmon.
Tip: Come on an empty stomach. I made so many rolls, I had leftovers.
Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, saying how much fun they were having. Of course, it helped that the culinary students served us like royalty. They did all the prep work including frying the tempura prawns, providing any ingredient we needed, and cleaning our stations afterwards. I wanted to recruit them to prep and clean up for me in my own kitchen.
Overall, I felt satisfied that I had not only learned how to make sushi, but experienced an interactive adventure well worth the price. And I can’t wait to throw a sushi party to impress my friends and family!