Tuesday, January 25, 2011


The holidays must be over…

By the middle of January the frenzy of the holidays is definitely receding.  I read somewhere that it is a time that many people experience the blues (and not in a good way).  The icy, snowy winter that much of the country is experiencing doesn’t help matters either.  Although an actual white Christmas day proved to be a perfect setting for a caviar and vodka tasting. 

Included were three samples of vodka: Tito’s (Texas), Stolichnaya (Russia) and my currant favorite Belvedere (Polish).  We served the usual accompaniments accented with whole wheat blinis and homemade crème fraiche.  American paddlefish caviar was an intriguing and savory standout.  If you love caviar… try this, we thought that it was excellent.  It is available from Continental Caviar located in of all places, Franklin, Tennessee.  This unique and sophisticated product has been produced by owner Jo Ann Defriese since 1986.       

Our method of coping with the winter blues involves cooking (of course) and sharing delicious food with family and friends.  After taking a month off, La Cucina at Avanti Savoia is in full swing with new classes and instructor chefs as well as repeats of some of our more popular classes.
For those of us with Scottish heritage or at least an appreciation of the culture, celebrating the 252nd birthday of poet Robert Burns (January 25th) is a great way to pump a little excitement into a dreary winter.  We have a wonderful past blog post on the topic.

As most sport fans can tell you, the Super Bowl is about to take place in Arlington, Texas on Sunday, February 6.  You can go with commercial chips, dips and delivery pizza OR you could visit our Recipe Section Menus on the Avanti Savoia website for really tasty and creative ideas.

A La Cucina cooking tip:  Are you ever bothered by the strong odors on your hands left by garlic, onions or seafood?  Here is the solution.  First, wash your hands with soap and cold water- not hot.  Hot water just “sets” the smell.  Next rub your hands on stainless steel… like the faucet under which you just washed your hands.  I love to demonstrate this technique in cooking classes, everyone is always so amazed.  I promise you that this really does work!