Tuesday, September 4
Teacher Training Tuesday!
So last night’s teacher training class was really fun and different! We met at Walden which is absolutely beautiful and huge! I had a bit of trouble finding the spa at first, but then arrived okay and even on time. Thankfully, Yoga Lounge has a connection to this wonderful place through one of the teachers so that is why they are able to partner with them. We will meet there again next week to learn about massage techniques (sweet), but last night we had a cooking class with Chef Pete! It was so fun! I kinda felt like I was on a cooking show! We all sat at this long bar overlooking this cooking station and Chef Pete introduced himself to us. Servers came around to get drink orders – all ice water with lemons, I think although some of us mentioned we wouldn’t hate a glass of vino! Smarter heads prevailed since we had to practice after the cooking class!!
Chef gave us a bound packet of info to keep and explained he was going to focus on “Greens and Grains” for us that evening. He then proceeded to show us a variety of greens in their raw state and then prepare a variety of them for us. Of course, we were able to taste each one after he prepared it.
Most of the greens I had never cooked with before, but recognized the names. First he gave us a sampling of kale chips which I was already familiar with and love.
It was funny because he too tried them from Heinen’s for $8 and decided he could cut the price down to like $1.29 by making them himsellf!! (Sound familiar?) They were good.
Next he made us collard greens. That was the first time I had eaten them and they were delicious!
He just used 1 T sugar and 1 T of cidar vinagar and an onion to one bunch of greens in a soup pot. Then he covered them with water, added a vented lid and cooked them down for 2 – 3 hours. They were so sweet and yummy. I totally want to make them.
Next was mustard greens.
To prepare these he made an Indian dish called saag
This was phenomenal!! I had never had this before either. He used:
1 onion – sweat it
2 T gee (clarified butter)
1 t curry powder
Cook this down and let it simmer for 1 1/2 – 2 hours. Add 2 T heavy cream (maybe yogurt as a substitute) at the end.
This was so good! He suggested serving this over rice and there is your meal! So noted, Chef Pete! I will definitely try it at home!
The next dish was my favorite by far. He made a Tofu Scramble and his plan was to add swiss chard to it.
The funny thing was that he got so into the recipe for the scramble (below) that he forgot to add the chard to it! So he cooked it up separately and we tried it that way. I was not a fan of this one – a little bit bitter for me. However, the scramble was to die for! I’m going to make it at home and I hope I can get the fam to get on board with tofu!! It tasted very much like eggs and Chef recommended serving it for breakfast!
16 ounces extra firm or firm regular tofu
1 teaspoon canola oil
1 medium sized onion diced finely
1 poblano pepper diced finely
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 bunch scallions sliced thin
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 roma tomato diced
1 avocado peeled, pitted and diced
Salt and ground black pepper
1. Cut the tofu into 1/2 inch pieces.
2. Heat oil in medium nonstick skillet over med-high heat. Add tofu and saute until slightly brown on each side, about 5 minutes. Next add in the onions, peppers and mushrooms and continue to cook for about 2 more minutes or until the vegetables are slightly wilted. Next add the scallions, cumin, and soy sauce and cook until combined, about 20 seconds. Add the avocado and tomato; continue to cook until avocado and tomato are slightly warmed, around 20 seconds. Season the scramble with salt and pepper to your liking and serve immediately.
Last, but not least we had the broccoli rabe. This is in the same family as broccoli, but definitely not the same. He cooked it up with a little bit of garlic and salt and I did not really like it either – pretty bitter.
It was so fun to try all of these different greens. It is helpful to know some easy ways to prepare them so they taste good. Hopefully I can work them into our diet somehow and nudge the fam to at least try them!!!
The second half of the class focused on grains. Chef showed us 10 different types of grain, both in the raw state and the cooked state and we tried them all!
- Amaranth – okay
- Barley – good – had it before – might be able to try it in place of cereal
- Brown Rice – Duh – part of our everyday diet already – urged us to use a rice cooker
- Buckwheat – okay
- Farro – This was yummy and I had not had it before – on the bigger side – another one that would be good in cereal
- Millet – Okay
- Steel Cut Oats – Duh – part of our everyday diet alreadyQuinoa – Love it!! I just need to remember to make it more often
- Wheat Berries – These were yummy – never had them before! He recommended using these in salads!
- Wild Rice – This may have been my favorite! Not like Uncle Ben’s – tasted like the real stuff!
He also gave us a really cool chart listing about 13 different grains and directions on how to cook them (amounts of water, cooking time and yielded amount).
The second part of our class for the night was a practice teaching session. Thankfully we taught in pairs this time rather than round robin! First we talked through the various modifications we can suggest for the basic poses like Sun A, chattarungas, chair, warrior 1 and warrior 2. Shelly and I took turns going through our cards – we each had 20 minutes to teach each other. I felt SO much better this week compared to last week! Practicing with my live-in student (hubby) is starting to pay off!! I actually felt a little more relaxed teaching this time and am looking a little bit less at my note cards.
Homework: Next week we have to have our note cards done for the entire sequence! We also have to have our brochure/flyer done and turned in that will promote our final project class. I feel re-energized by the class last night. I got positive feedback and feel like I know what I need to do to really learn the sequence well and become more confident. Practice, practice, practice!