Sweet inspiration

Posted by Anita on 04.23.07 9:14 PM

(c)2007 AEC *all rights reserved*I have to brag: I spent a lovely Sunday afternoon learning the tricks of seasonal fruit desserts at the elbow of Shuna Fish Lydon, the Edible San Francisco regular who sings songs in the key of sweet (and sometimes bittersweet) over at the award-winning eggbeater. But don’t be jealous: You can play, too.

Shuna’s enthusiasm for this subject matter is infectious, and the class style is so intimate and inclusive that — even if you choose a topic that’s all demonstration, as I did — Shuna shows you all the tricks and gives everyone enough hands-on time with the ingredients along the way that you’re ready to fly solo in your own kitchen. The classes are liberally peppered with tales from Shuna’s restaurant career at The French Laundry, Citizen Cake, and Gramercy Tavern, among other places you’ve certainly also heard of.

(c)2007 AEC *all rights reserved*Even if you think you know it all, you’re sure to find some hidden gems. One example: I make fruit crumbles almost weekly once summer strikes, but I learned a great trick for keeping the oven clean from bubble-over messes and discovered a new secret ingredient to add to my topping.

And as someone who thought she hated rhubarb, I’m here to tell you that if you learn to make it Shuna’s way, you may become a convert, too. (No stringy nursery sludge here, nope.) And, talk about eating locally: The flavorings for the Meyer lemon and lemon verbena ice cream — which we ate with our vanilla-bean roasted strawberries — were sourced right in Shuna’s neighborhood!

The new Eggbeater class schedule‘s just been posted. Check it out:

Sunday May 6, 2007: Pie & Galette Dough
Sunday May 20, 2007: Ice Cream & Sorbet
Sunday June 3, 2007: TBA
Sunday June 10, 2007: TBA
End of June: A Knife Skills Class and a Baking Class in NYC!
Mid July: A Knife Skills Class and possibly a Baking Class in Portland, Oregon!

Yep, you East Coast and Pac Northwest kids can get in on the fun, too.

Still on the fence? Take a peek at the sort of gorgeous desserts you’ll learn to make (and get to eat!) and see if your willpower holds out.

baking, classes, dessert, other blogs



Comment by Laurie

I’m glad to hear you’re a rhubarb convert! We’ve been eating rhubarb crumble as much as possible. (I greatly prefer straight rhubarb over strawberry-rhubarb, and strawberries aren’t in season here yet anyway.) I spotted the secret ingredient, but have no idea what the green bits are.

Posted on 04.24.07 at 5:44AM

Comment by Anita

Sharp eyes, Laurie. The green bits are chopped rosemary, and they add the most delicate, haunting flavor to the crumble.

Posted on 04.24.07 at 10:05PM

Comment by Rebecca

So what was the trick for keeping the oven clean?! I need that trick!

Posted on 05.03.07 at 6:06PM

Comment by Anita

Hi, Rebecca:

You can actually see the trick in the top photo — simply place a rimmed cookie sheet under the baking dish. Even better, you can line the tray with parchment. It’s so simple, it makes you smack your forehead.

Posted on 05.03.07 at 6:38PM

Comment by Rebecca

What a simple solution! Especially the parchment part. I need to do that under my fruit pies; the crisps and cobblers don’t seem to bubble over as much. BTW, did you notice the raw rhubarb compote on Culinate this week? It was seasoned with rosemary, just like what you made. I had never heard of that combination before, and now twice in as many days.

Posted on 05.05.07 at 12:04PM

Pingback by Married …with dinner » Blog Archive » A slice of life

[...] When I read that Shuna Lydon was teaching her legendary pastry tutorial — a class that, by her own admission, she’s taught so many times she’s lost count — I leapt at the chance to sign up. The last time I had the pleasure to learn at her elbow, I picked up countless little tricks for making outrageously tasty seasonal fruit desserts. [...]

Posted on 04.19.08 at 12:11AM

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