Fall is in the air!

October 9, 2013

Rose 4Here in LA, it just now starting to feel like fall.  Finally!!!!  Leaves are falling, the sun is tilting in the sky and it is feeling a little cooler in the mornings.  We may even get some rain soon :).  I'm always a bit melancholy about the coming cool weather.  I'll miss the fruits and veggies of the summer and having dinner outside on the patio, however, we will continue to do lots of grilling because I'm putting in a new barbeque!  Why now?  Because no matter how low the temperature dips, it seems our guests love being around our grill.  Maybe because it never really gets that cold here, but I also think being around the open flame just appeals to that primal fascination with fire.  In saying goodbye to the summer and our summer menu, we get to say hello to our new fall menu!  I'm very happy with this one. It's got some comfort food, some world cuisine, some really healthy options and decadent desserts!

Have a look at our new
Fall-Winter Menu! Click here to check it out on our website or scroll down and read on.  I've got a great new recipe from it for you to prepare on your grill, or mine, and tips on buying the freshest fish.   

As the holidays approach, keep us in mind for your entertaining needs.  We can accommodate parties of 10 to 150 guests. An LAFW event is a fun way to bring people together and cooking is a great activity for all.  Keep in touch with all the goings-on in the LAFW kitchen by clicking onto our Facebook page and becoming a fan.

Wishing you all a wonderful start to fall and I'm looking forward to cooking with you soon!


LA Food Works
Fall-Winter 2013 Menu

LA Food Works is proud to present its new Fall/Winter 2013 Menu! Our signature interactive, hands-on cooking events are ideal for holiday parties, team building exercises, client entertaining and the celebration of any special occasion!

 10.13An LA Food Works Event Includes
* Hors d'oeuvre and beverage reception on arrival
* Fun and knowledgeable chef instructors to guide you through your recipes
* Private cooking and dining experience at our charming venues
* Seasonal gourmet menu selections for lunch, brunch or dinner
* Chef aprons to use while you are cooking
* Recipe packets for everyone to take home

   Entreé Course Selections 

Figgy Piggy Cornish Game Hens
(Roasted Figs and Hens with a Bacon Port Sauce)
Fennel Salad with Cinnamon Vinaigrette
Roasted Garlic and Spinach Soufflé
Mushroom Risotto

Braised Chicken with Olives and Lemon
Carrots, Dandelion Greens and Cumin-Raisin Vinaigrette
Roasted Quinoa with Spiced Apples
Grilled Kohlrabi and Red Onion with Pomegranate Reduction

Grilled Steak with Blackberry Cabernet Sauce
(This option can also be done with salmon)
Kale and Carrot Salad with Goat Cheese Dressing
Cauliflower Gratin
Crispy Rosemary Potato Wedges

Pork Chops with Cranberry-Maple Pan Sauce
(This option can also be done with salmon and/or chicken)
Spiced Parsnip Salad
Celery Root and Potato Mash
Grilled Brussels Sprouts with Apples-Pecan Sauce

Whole Grilled Snapper with Red Pepper Tapenade
(This option can also be done with chicken)
Orange, Radicchio, and Oregano Salad
Polenta with Mushrooms and Fontina
Roasted Green Beans with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Kalamata 

Dessert Selections

Pear Cobbler with Cranberry Streusel and Vanilla Ice Cream

Pumpkin Pie Bars with Maple Sugar Whipped Cream

Red Velvet Crepes with Mascarpone Cream and Chocolate Ganache

Flourless Chocolate Turkish Coffee Cake

Grand Marnier Souffles with Vanilla Creme Anglaise

Whole Roasted Snapper with
Roasted Red Pepper Tapenade

I am so excited about cooking on the new grill!  I'm also loving this new recipe because we get to grill a whole fish.  The trick to having this dish turn out beautifully is to use a grill basket.  I got mine at Sur la Table, but they are easy to find online too.  Just make sure you generously oil the fish and the basket so the fish doesn't stick.  While it's grilling, make this great tapenade to go with it.  Featured on our new Fall-Winter Menu, we are serving this dish with polenta, roasted green beens and an orange and radicchio salad.  If you want to simplify your menu, grill the fish and make the tapenade, then throw some lightly oiled fresh bread on the bbq at the last minute and toss a salad.  A delicious meal that's fun to make and so good for you!

1 3 pound whole red snapper-cleaned, gutted, scaled, rinsed and patted dry
cup finely chopped fresh parsley
tablespoons capers, rinsed and finely chopped
cloves garlic, minced
teaspoon crushed red pepper
tablespoon olive oil, plus more for rubbing fish and grill
For Tapenade
1/2 cup roasted red peppers, finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped fennel fronds
5 whole Castelvetrano olives, pitted and finely chopped
1 lemon, zested, rind sliced off and discarded, fruit divided into segments then chopped
teaspoon finely chopped parsley
cup olive oil

Kosher salt to taste

whole snapper

Chop the parsley, capers, garlic cloves, and crushed red pepper together with a large pinch of salt. Transfer the paste to a small bowl and stir in the oil. Make 5 parallel 3-inch-long slashes on each side of the snapper, slicing almost through to the bone. Lightly season the fish with salt and fill the slashes with the paste. Rub the fish all over with more olive oil. 

Light a grill and oil a grill basket that's large enough to hold the fish. Set the fish in the basket and grill over moderate heat, turning once, until the flesh just flakes with a fork, about 5-7 minutes on each side. Carefully remove the fish from the basket, transfer to a platter or baking sheet and tent with aliminum foil until ready to serve.

While the fish is grilling, place all the ingredients for the tapenade in the bowl of a food processor.  Process to combine, stopping to scrape down the sides until mixed well then season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, use 2 forks and lift the fillets off the bones.  Discard bones, transfer to a serving platter and serve the fish with tapenade.

Serves 4.  Per Serving: 542 Calories; 26g Fat; 70g Protein; 3g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 126mg Cholesterol; 260mg Sodium.

 Buying Fresh Fish

fresh king salmon

With beautiful fish counters at just about every supermarket, we have an abundant amount of seafood choices!  It can be overwhelming and somewhat confusing about how to choose the right fish or fillet.  Here are some tips on how to buy the freshest and most delicious fish for your next meal.  If all this looks too much to remember, just remember one thing... smell the fish. It's the technique which I find easiest to do, it's very reliable and something that most who work behind the counters are willing to assist you in doing. 

Whole Fish

Look for bright, clear eyes.
The eyes are the window to a truly fresh fish, for they fade quickly into gray dullness. Dull-eyed fish may be safe to eat, but they are past their prime.

Next look at the fish.
Does it shine? Does it look metallic and clean? Or has it dulled or has discolored patches on it? If so, it is marginal.

Smell it.
A fresh fish should smell like clean water, or a touch briny or even like cucumbers. Under no circumstances should you buy a nasty smelling fish. Cooking won't improve it.

Look at the gills.
They should be a rich red. If the fish is old, they will turn the color of faded brick.

Fish Fillets

Look for vibrant flesh.
All fish fade as they age. If the fillet still has skin, that skin should look as pristine as the skin on an equally good whole fish – shiny and metallic.

Smell it.
The smell test is especially important with fillets. They should have no pungent aromas.

Is there liquid on the meat?
If so, that liquid should be clear, not milky. Milky liquid on a fillet is the first stage of rot.

If they let you, press the meat with your finger. It should be resilient enough so your indentation disappears. If your fingerprint remains, move on.

Tips from Hank Shaw, About.com

WANT TO USE THESE TIPS AND RECIPES IN YOUR E-ZINE, BLOG OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you do not alter the information in any way and include a credit that reads "by Rose LeBoeuf, www.lafoodworks.com, Interactive Cooking Classes, Parties, and Corporate Team Building Events for Groups Looking for a Fun and Unique Dinning Experience." 

 LA Food Works Events 

 Ideal for Team Building, Holiday Parties, Client Entertaining, Birthday Parties, Showers and Private Gatherings. 
Let LA Food Works make your party one which your guests will not soon forget!
No previous cooking experience required!
Just willingness to put on an apron,
get your hands a little messy,
indulge in some great food
and have lots of fun playing in the kitchen!
We also happily design Custom Cooking Parties. If you have a group of 10 or more foodies who love great food and playing together in the kitchen, contact us and we will design a custom menu or theme class for you and your group.

Our interactive cooking parties both unify and entertain...perfect for any occasion that requires great food, interesting activities and lots of fun!


For information or to book your event, contact Rose LeBoeuf at 310-288-0100 for an event planning kit, pricing and availability.