Terry Lavin, Head of Catering at St Helens College, treated 15 WISH members to a chicken dinner master class on St Patrick’s Day.
Terry started the evening with a fascinating look back at his career. From the very bottom of the pile (with a squashed down hat) to Head Chef in Yorkshire Hotels, with time spent at The Savoy and The River Cafe. He has certainly met and cooked for his fair share of celebrities – If you ask him nicely he’ll even tell you which famous diva always ordered a very glamorous sausage ‘n’ mash! And now he can add the ladies of WISH to his repertoire!
Our theme for the evening was ‘Money Saving Meals’ so Terry showed us how to use every scrap of meat from a chicken, and how to get every bit of flavour from the bones, all ensuring maximum value for money.
We were shown how to dissect a chicken into legs, breast and wings, without losing a finger in the process, and how to make a delicious stock from the carcass. Terry then went on to cook the chicken in three delicious, inexpensive ways using basic store cupboard ingredients. We were treated to ‘Nandos’ style chicken marinated in paprika, chilli and garlic, chicken breast served with mushroom rice, and a white wine sauce, and chicken leg with sage and onion stuffing, topped with parmesan cheese and served with a salad dressed with home-made vinaigrette.
Nothing was left to waste – even the skin from the tomato was used to make a pretty rose – I wonder how many tomato roses have appeared on plates around St Helens this week?
The smells wafting around the kitchen during the cooking were mouth watering, so when it came to tasting the dishes, once the cooking was done, no one held back and the plates were cleared in minutes! All three dishes were delicious with lots of us promising to try them out for ourselves at home.
A lovely evening was had by all who came along and we look forward to returning to St Helens College for more cooking soon.