Monday, March 1, 2010

Joanie and Julia

I start out the afternoon more Lucille Ball

than Julia Child.

As I prepare to leave the house, I grab my one and only apron (black w/Starbucks logo that came free with snazzy espresso machine) and -- HORRORS -- it is not clean!  I had worn it to bake cookies (and --poor family --I rarely bake).  Imagine streaks of white flour smeared across the black fabric.  Somewhere I imagine Julia tsk-tsking in disapproval.  I'm just sure she always wore a beautifully clean white apron!  I grab a damp towel and try to make it look at least halfway presentable.

I get in my car and happily drive toward my destination: In Good Taste (Lake Oswego), enjoying the beautiful, sunny Sunday afternoon. 

In Good Taste: Directions to Lake Oswego location

Unfortunately, I am supposed to be at In Good Taste (Portland, in the Pearl District).  

In Good Taste: Directions to Pearl District location

Hurry, hurry  It would have been only 18 miles if I had gone straight from Hillsboro to Portland, but I somehow managed to almost double my trip.  Hurry, hurry!  Class starts in 5 minutes and I have over 10 more miles to go!

As I drive, I realize that although I have been to the store in the Pearl several times, the address has completely slipped out of my panicked mind.  So -- I quickly decide to call my sister, who lives in the Pearl.  But -- new State cell phone laws prohibit hand held and I have yet to update my million years old cell (no speaker phone feature and no ear piece).  Okay -- will get to the Pearl, find a parking spot, and call.  Oops.  I left my cell phone at home!  D'oh!

I get to the Pearl and drive around a few blocks hoping to just bump into the store, then end up parking by my sister's building and calling her on the security system.  It surprises her so much that I am there and asking for an address RIGHT NOW, that she gives me the wrong address.  I run around the Pearl, ask for help at a Ben and Jerry's, then finally rush into the store breathless and a little sweaty.  Good thing I am wearing my running shoes (they suggested closed toe, flat shoes for comfort). Whew!  I am there!

They are so lovely at In Good Taste.  At least three different people apologized to me.  As if being late and missing the first 20 minutes of the class was somehow their fault.  I had so much fun, learned a lot, and got to talk food and wine with wonderful instructors and some great classmates.

I am listing the menu for fun, but I forgot to take my camera to class, so I found similar pictures from the internet.  I will post pictures in another post as I recreate these dishes at home.

Celebrating Julia Menu:

Pissaladière Niçoise (basically, a carmelized onion tart, with olives and anchovies)

Artichokes with Hollandaise Sauce
(Our hollandaise looked prettier, was warm, and was served in little cream pitchers)

Frisèe Salad with Poached Egg and Lardons

Bœuf Bourguignon over Buttered Noodles (This looks pretty close to what we made, but we had noodles rather than the bread pictured)

Chocolate Soufflé with Crème Anglaise

Wine Pairings:
Louis Perdrier Champagne (served with the onion tart)

Mad Fish 2005 Sauvignon Blanc (served with the artichokes and salad)

Bourgogne Haute Cotes de Beaune (served with the stew)

After my rough beginning, things were pretty uneventful.  I didn't cut myself, burn myself, or burn the food.  I even learned to poach an egg, which I had never done before and is kind of tricky.  In the end, I think even Julia would have been proud.

With wishes, true and kind -- Joan


  1. Oh that's hilarious! But I'm glad you finally got there and had a great time. Sounds like so much fun. Will you cook any of these delights francais again?

  2. I am so glad you finally made it and had such a good time. I laughed so much reading your account of events leading up to your arrival. Sounds like a great class. I love doing things like that.

  3. What an hysterically funny trip! Glad you eventually got there...looks like it was very worthwhile!

  4. Did I ever laugh at your story, Joan! And then I drooled at all your delicious dishes. Sounds like a great afternoon! There is life beyond quilting!

  5. I loved your play by play commentary! I'm so sorry you were late, but everything looks and souns so delicious that my breakfast granola bar isn't as well appreciated my stomach as it once was!

    Hooray for You!

  6. tell a very good story! I felt like I was right along with you on the whole trip! I missed out on eating that good food though! :(

  7. That was hilarious. I'm sure it's funnier to you now looking back on it than when it was actually happening. I'm so jealous that you live in the Portland area. Love the Pearl.

  8. haaahaaa...doesn't it all just go that way sometimes?! I am glad you enjoyed your class...but I have a confession. As soon as I saw that you were going to Lake Oswego, I got a ping of jealousy. My closest, oldest and dearest friend lives your location alone made me wish for a moment that I too was headed to Lake Oswego.

  9. sorry to hear that getting there proved so hectic. but so very glad that you had so much fun and got to prepare all those yummy foods - bet the conversation over lunch was a blast!

  10. lol, that sounds like a rough start. But at least you had fun and learned a lot! I should take a class like this some time.

  11. OMG
    what an adventure, and what a menu!
    Do you take reservations?
    V from Cyprus!

  12. Wow, what a crazy start to what turned out to be a pretty good day after all. That menu sounds amazing! I always love when they include some wine recommendations too. So happy to hear you survived without injury!

  13. What a trip and not to worry about the apron, it would have looked like you were a seasoned cook. You could have warned us to bring a serviette to drool into , instead of the keyboard. Are there more cooking classes coming up?

  14. You are such a good sport!!! : ) Sounds like a total blast. ; ) In the words of Rachel Ray..."Yum-O!"

  15. You go girl. What an inspiration. If I wanted that type of food I would be lazy and go out!