Cooking up a new date night experience

by Giacomo Abruzzi MG

If typical date nights are starting to get stale, here's another option: get cooking. I recently went on what was, for me, a perfect date night outing at a DC-area cooking school. There are several cooking schools and independent cooking instructors throughout the area, where you can take classes in everything from classic French cooking to sushi techniques, for everyone from novice to experienced cooks. For our evening out, we attended a class in molecular gastronomy, which included instruction, dinner, and wine.


I walked in not knowing what to expect and walked out completely mesmerized with a handful of new cooking techniques and at least one recipe I am planning on repeating very soon. In a nutshell, I learned how to use the basic molecular gastronomy toolkit, which includes gelatin, soy lecithin, tapioca maltodextrin, agar, xanthan gum, sodium alginate and calcium; from these handful of ingredients, you can make gels, thicken liquids, make powders and foams, and, yes, even do a little spherification.




During the course of the evening, we made a Modern Caprese Salad with basil foam and olive oil powder; an Umami Bomb, featuring roasted mushrooms in a parmesan brown butter sage gel with tomato bacon beads over greens with umami dressing; and, for dessert, a Coconut Gel with honey almonds and sweet basil. It was a delicious, everyone walked out with their bellies full, and, honestly, just a little tipsy. So, the next time you're looking for date night inspiration, just have your search engine look for "cooking classes" in your area and see what you can find!