Apparently it all started with Lemon Curd. Homemade Fine Foods was founded on a ‘real food’ philosophy – food that you can buy, that will taste like what you’ve made at home. The upside? Not having to spend hours making it yourself. And while I love cooking, that idea sounds fantastic to me – especially after a long day on my feet where I don’t even really feel like cooking dinner, much less dessert.
And they don’t only do desserts, they teach you how to make it too!
I was invited over the weekend by a very lovely Merna from Homemade Fine Foods to a Mousse Class!! This was an especially exciting piece of news for me since my only (failed) attempt at a chocolate mousse ended up with whipped cream in a glass and bits of chocolate that had hardened because of the coldness of the cream. Go figure. Lovely, aerated, velvety dessert just seems to elude me. After having to admit recently – with much embarrassment – that I had no idea how to create a proper mousse, I was thankful for the opportunity to be taught the proper techniques.
The class was at 11am, and because Sean was working the night shift, we had not had anything to eat and were starving. No worry though, they feed you!
I love events that feed you.
Great cheeses from Small Cow Farm and luscious, ripe fruit really started the day off well for me. Even Sean – who had worked all night – was happily relaxed and ready for some chocolate.
And boy was there chocolate.
We were taught the difference between using compound chocolate and coverture – compound can be heated to a higher temperature and so will pasteurize your eggs – and what temperatures to look for when melting your chocolate.
Interesting fact – while cocoa butter has a melting point of 35C, compound chocolate contains fats that allow you to heat it higher, hence allowing the pasteurization of the raw eggs!
The class also covered whipping and incorporating the meringue…
And the whipped cream, amongst other things.
Now, Sean isn’t the biggest cook around – in fact, he hardly ever gets to step into the kitchen because I’m always in there doing something or the other – but there’s at least one part of the class that he absolutely LOVES.
How can anyone say no to that finished product! Sweet, creamy, and comforting, we got to take home two massive tubs of mousse that had been decorated with swirls of dark chocolate. The mind-boggling thing was that such a simple technique looks so pretty and polished. Definitely something that I’ll try on my next dessert served in glass.
There were some moments that we had to wait – for example, the chocolate mixture had to cool down before mixing in the whipped cream – and guess what happened?
They feed you some more!
Did I mention that I love being fed?
And while I have a weakness for Bread and Butter pudding – it’s a comfort food that many members of my family have in common – and Sean devoured the Sticky Date Pudding, the Raspberry Panna Cotta was my favourite!
This story is too cute – you’ve gotta see it for yourself:
Apparently Cuttaway Creek Raspberry Farm also supplied raspberries to many well-known Sydney restaurants. I have to pay a visit to them some day.
But anyway, back to the class. I left with arms full of tubs of mousse and a belly full of delicious desserts. Both Sean and I thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, and that was a feat for Sean after pulling an all-nighter.
It was a great way for us to cook together as a couple, and a great pre- (or post) Valentine’s day present!
The class costs $80 per person and is held at their factory store in Tempe.
Homemade Fine Foods
Unit 4, 3 Wood Street, TEMPE NSW 2044
(02) 9559 4449
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Note: Insatiable Munchies was invited as a guest of Homemade Fine Foods