A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to Cookmate in Worcester city centre to try out a cookery course in their new cookery school. I have worked in Worcester doing my normal day job for nearly 10 years and have visited Cookmate whenever I have been able too in that time. It has always been a lovely cookery shop and I have always thought of it as an Aladdin’s Cave for foodies so when I heard that they were opening up a cookery school, I got very excited!
One Thursday after dropping Thomas and Daniel at school/preschool I drove down to Worcester to attend the Knife skills with Asian Influence Course. This is a short three-hour course which perfectly fits into the school hours to show you how to buy, look after and use knives with confidence. The course is led by Paul Bough who has over 30 years experience as a chef and is a Zwilling J A Henckels’ chef ambassador. The course centres on the Zwilling 20cm chefs knife but other types of knives are used and mentioned too. We are started by learning how to hold our knife correctly and then proceeded to try and get our ‘celery licence’ by thinly slicing it. Once we all proved we could chop celery without taking our fingers off, we moved onto other vegetables and other knife techniques.
We learnt how to Julienne peppers, Brunoise garlic, ginger and lemongrass and Chiffonade pak choy. Paul spoke about how by cutting the vegetables up in different ways, we could bring out different flavours and textures in them which would lead to a complex tasting final dish. To finish Paul got us to make an apple into a fan like the one shown above. Mine failed completely so the photo is the apple done by the expert himself! The final skill that we learnt was how to de-bone a chicken thigh. I use chicken thighs a lot in my general cooking and usually buy the boneless and skinless ones in the supermarket. I have always wanted to learn how to de-bone them as the ones that are left whole in the supermarket are a great deal cheaper than the boneless and skinless ones. I could not believe how easy it was and wished I had learnt the skill sooner.
Once all the chopping was completed, we settled down to watch Paul cook us lunch with everything that we had prepared. He cooked an Asian inspired lemon chicken with soy marinated chicken thighs. It was absolutely delicious and I cannot wait to make it again.
Overall, I really enjoyed doing the Knife skills with Asian Influence Course at Cookmate. I thought the length of it was perfect and priced at £30 for three hours very reasonable too. I learnt lots of new skills that I have started using daily in my kitchen. I think everyone should who is interested in cooking/food to some degree should attend a basic knife course like this one. They are tools that everyone has in their kitchen and I think everyone should learn how to use them properly.
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I was invited to attend the cookery course as a guest of Cookmate. All opnions are my own. I was not required to write a positive review