Grilling 101

This last week, I was able to attend and demonstrate one of my favorite events! The Grilling 101!

Granted, some people reading this will say, I know how to cook a steak already, what is the big deal? For me, it is a special event. The majority of the time, I get to teach women how to cook steaks on the grill. It is such an amazing feeling, watching the participants and the excitement that they get when their steak comes out perfect. It is also an extreme plus when it tastes really good!

It isn’t just about grilling, it is about coming together as a group. Empowering women, or whoever may be in the group that day. It is the camaraderie between the participants that makes these events worth while.

Plus, it is always nice to throw in a few tips and tricks along the way. Take wire brushes for example, so many people use these to clean their grills but these can be very harmful. The bristles can break off and get stuck to the grill. They have the potential to get into your meat, and if you were to swallow one of those, it could be life threatening! Instead use some foil and an onion! They have the coolest onion holders at H-E-B, and they make cleaning your grill with an onion super easy.

I also like to challenge those well-done steak eaters. It is a free steak, be brave and try it medium-well! You might be amazed at how much flavor the steak has, and you won’t have to use that A1 sauce ever again!

At these events, I am always extra grateful for my time at The Texas Beef Council for giving me the skills to continue to administer this event! It definitely is one of the Texas CattleWomen’s favorite things to do!

Regardless of what it is, do what you love. Do what brings you joy. You never know how much joy you could bring to someone else along the way.

As always share some love, we could all use a little more love.

French Quarter – New Orleans!

My week in New Orleans was definitely one that I needed. Trips with amazing friends are always good for the soul. On our free day, we hit the streets of the French Quarter. Our first stop was Cafe Du Monde. Even though I have been to NOLA a couple of times, I have never been to this historic place. As always, there was a line to get in when we got there, but the line moved quickly and we got to kick our morning off with some amazing Beignets. As I said, that diet went out the window!

Since not all of us had been through the French Quarter before, we decided to check out the sights. We made our way through looking at the shops and hearing music being played or sung as we made our way to Bourbon street. Nighttime Bourbon street and Daytime Bourbon street are two completely different things. If you are into the party life, check out the nighttime scene. The daytime scene was relaxing as not too many people were out and about.

If you take the time to stop and look at the buildings and the architectural work, you are going to see some incredible features. I think the best part about it, is that most of these buildings are old, from the 1800s. Every once in a while, you would look through the buildings and see a beautiful courtyard.

On our third day there, we all got to attend the New Orleans School of Cooking, Cooking Demonstration. While we did not get to cook, we were able to watch the Chef as he walked us through all the steps to make the recipes we were going to be trying. He was a great teacher and historian. One of my favorite parts of that cooking class was learning all the historical aspects of the food, where the names came from, how Creole and Cajun differ, and how those styles of cooking got to New Orleans in the first place. If you love Seafood, I highly recommend taking a class here. We got to try Chicken and Sausage Gumbo, Crawfish Etoufee, Bananas Foster, and Pralines. My favorite dish was the Bananas Foster dessert. Bananas in a mix that he lit on fire, and topped with ice cream! This girl was loving all these amazing foods.

However, I have to save the best dessert for last! Surprisingly enough, it was from the Hilton Hotel that we stayed at. It was cheesecake on top of Oreo crumbles drizzled in a Raspberry sauce. The cheesecake almost looked like ice cream when it came out. It was so soft and fluffy. Perfection.

I love traveling to conventions with my CattleWomen crew but this trip was one for the books and one of my favorites to date. Seriously, sometimes you just need a week away with good people and a good destination. Put your to-do list aside and enjoy life out there.

As always, share some love, we could all use a little more love.

French Bakery Workshop

For those that truly truly know me, know that bread is the way to my heart! I love bread, all types of bread, pastries, you name it. If I have not had it before, I am definitely willing to try it. I do try to watch what I eat but sometimes you just have to splurge and this past week was one of those times.

I have been on this new kick about adventuring out, trying new things, truly figuring out what tickles my fancy and what I am okay with not doing on a regular basis. I decided to try a pastry cooking class and of course my go to partner for this class was my mom. I surprised her for tickets at Christmas and we attended the French Baking Workshop at the Sur La Table in Austin.

We arrived and made it to our table, where we were in a group with another lady. Our Chef was Maggie, and she is the Pastry Chef at the Domain location in Austin. If you are ever interested in cooking pastries, take the classes from her. She was awesome, she kept everyone on track and on task and was very encouraging.

Our group was great as well, we all took turns doing little tasks throughout the recipe to complete them and get them in the oven. The biggest thing I learned from this cooking class was to prep before hand. The Chefs had prepped the three different recipes for us, so all we had to do was add things to the blender, stir, mix and put them on the pans. I did not realize how much easier it made things to have everything prepped out beforehand. I felt like I could go home that day and make these same things, as long as I prepped beforehand. This class definitely gave me the confidence to want to get back into the kitchen again.

My favorite recipe was the Eclairs, while not all of ours were filled with cream, we had a great time attempting to fill them.

If you are interested in taking cooking class, be sure to check out Sur La Table and see if there are any near your area. They have lots of different options to choose from. I will definitely be attending another class sooner than later!

As always share some love, we could all use a little more love