I have - not under duress - discovered that I really really like cognac. Hennessy in particular - maybe because I have been given two bottles now. But definitely because you can taste roses. Like those big stinky ones. And contrary to modern taste (orchid anyone?), I fn love roses.
So when I got invited to a Hennessy and Choc Masterclass I was v excited. I had just finished my last bottle - the end slopped into a roast pork gravy (served with wasabi mash, and a salad of grilled courgette salad with basil leaves and an orange-peel dressing) - and had no more for after-drink-servings, that time when the Lindt bar comes around. Chocolate + Hennessy = good thinking.
But, I was not excited because even tho I now have a 7.1 batting average for not messing up in the kitchen (3 mess ups out of 7 is quite a lot), I still cannot chop.
First I am late.
Second I have to chop. Cabbage. I cut it wrong - into chunks, thereby halving the amount of cabbage we have.
To get this shot of hot judges I had to crouch behind the stove. The French cognac specialist on the left is saying is: You r keeding me, a cabbage in chunks? I am not sure they are going to get thru to the next round … Stern food specialist judge: This is devastating hot French Cognac Specialist, she’s really let her team down.
Our chef, Spencer Sykes of Kream, was lovely - he didn’t shout at us once, even when I couldn’t open the fridge because there was no handle. My teammate was also nice, even though I introduced myself as a Food Blogger.
Watching over the food blogger.
Our menu entry:
Springbok carpaccio rolled with red cabbage and amurula jelly
Shin pie - this was really good, a sort of musty, tobacco-y stock
Seared venison rubbed in coffee
All dribbled with Hennessy & Chocolate sauce!
We didn’t win the competition (robbed! I tell you, robbed!) but I did get a bottle of The Privilege Hennessy, which I definitely won’t use for cooking, anytime, but will be serving at the end-end of dinner parties, with that Lindt slab that goes around the table.
PS_ You will notice there are product shots. Such is the nature of days like this, but when the day is fun and the people are lovely, well - such is the nature :)