Food Demos, Who Me? by Tania Pasterz

“Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious.” – Ruth Reichl

I am the newest member of the Marcel’s retail team: a group of women that love all things culinary and are passionate about cooking. Shortly after learning the retail ropes and just when I started to feel comfortable; I was informed I was scheduled to do a Food Demonstration. A reallife food demo with a TV monitor, surrounded by customers watching and listening to my every word.

I must confess, being a lover of all things food and entertaining, it is something I’ve dreamt about. Standing alone at my kitchen counter pretending to be some variation of the Barefoot Contessa. That said, just the thought of it gave me anxiety. Pretending alone in my own kitchen was one thing – but real customers, an audience other than my family? What if my food tasted horrible? What if I didn’t have enough? What if I couldn’t talk and cook at the same time? Despite some serious trepidation, I came up with a recipe that I thought would be good and began planning.

The day finally arrived. My food was prepped, my recipe tested and it was time for my own little cooking show to begin (still scared to death mind you). The customers showed up, they asked interesting questions, and liked my dish (Root Vegetable Salad with Fried Eggs)! In fact, one tiny patron (age 4) said, “excuse me but can I say something, this is very artistic.” Literally out of the mouths of babes. My fear melted away and I knew I was hooked.

Almost every Tuesday a member of the retail staff at Marcel’s does a food demonstration. We prepare simple, fast and delicious food designed for busy people. The team member’s name and dish appears on our quarterly calendars for you to pick and choose which demonstration best fits your schedule. There is no charge and no sign up. And you get to leave with a new recipe!

All you need to do is show up, sit down, maybe learn a tidbit or two and taste. 

Root Vegetable Salad with Fried Eggs
  1. 4 carrots, diced
  2. 4 parsnips, diced
  3. 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  4. 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  5. 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  6. Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  7. 6 slices bacon, diced
  8. 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  9. 1 5-ounce package baby arugula or mixed greens (about 8 cups)
  10. 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
  11. 1/4 cup grated parmesan, plus more for topping
  12. 4 large eggs
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss the carrots, parsnips, red onion, garlic and two tablespoons olive oil on a baking sheet; season with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Roast, stirring half way through, until tender and lightly browned, about 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate using a slotted spoon; discard all but 1 tablespoon of the drippings from the skillet.
  3. Whisk the remains 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the vinegar in a large bowl. Add the roasted vegetables, bacon, arugula, parsley and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper and toss.
  4. Heat the reserved bacon drippings in the skillet over medium-high heat. Crack the eggs and fry until just set, about 4 minutes. Serve over salad and top with more parmesan.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

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