When you are invited to bring just your tastebuds and your wanderlust to a day of cooking, it’s fair to say it’s an invite you can’t turn down. After a day in Malton a couple of weeks ago exploring Europe’s food (with some added improvements from the heart of North Yorkshire), I found that my hopes for a special day were exceeded.
I will be doing a ‘two parter’ blog post in this instance as I want to give the Malton food scene a proper review, so check back later to see the full low-down on Malton, the self-proclaimed ‘food capital of Yorkshire’.
For now, the focus is on the food of Europe as Inntravel took us on a day of meandering our way through a range of dishes from countries where they offer holidays. Our trip took us from Scandinavia (Sweden to be precise!), down to Germany and the wonders of the Black Forest, down to Italy, back up through France, all via Yorkshire.
With the wonderful ladies at Malton Cookery School promising a hands on day where, as a team, we would be able to work together to create all the different elements of the different dishes, I soon jumped in at the deep end!
With a focus on locally sourced high-quality ingredients (many coming from Malton itself), here’s a rundown of what we cooked (and how I got on with it!).
Swedish mackerel on toast
This was a dish of firsts for me in terms of cooking and prep work. Despite this, I have to say that this is one of the dishes where I feel I played a key role!
First of all, I was entrusted to help make one of the two sourdough breads to be used as toast, something that was surprisingly therapeutic, before moving on to the more challenging role of getting the fish ready.
Having never filleted a fish before in my life (the shame!) I was tutored brilliantly to get the confidence to turn a fabulously fresh (no ‘fishy’ stench’ here) mackerel into something that was de-boned and vaguely resembled a fillet!
While I would love to say it was my own skill and natural talent that got me through this tough prep work, in all honesty it was really the excellent guidance and advice from our teachers who managed to keep me reassured enough to keep plugging away at the filleting process!
Having completed the filleting, I was able to take a step back and watch as other bloggers took over and pickled the mackerel, got the dressing ready, and made it all look rather beautiful!
It was a pleasure to eat (especially when paired with the Swedish Absolut vodka!) and was certainly a lovely way to start the day of eating.
Pizza with Yorkshire topping
With the Pizza, I confess my involvement was limited to choosing my own toppings and attempting to shape my dough! While I failed horribly at shaping the dough (as you can see in my photos) I did rather enjoy the chance to mix and match some wonderful produce to produce a tomato base free pizza.
While the cooking experience here was a little more limited, this was a nice nibble to keep us going through the day.
Coq au wall top (coq au vin but with local beer served with pomme Anna and pea francais)
A dish where my only involvement was the eating! Enjoy these pictures as this was a tasty dish but it was slightly overshadowed by…
Local pork served with smoked mushroom dust and gnocchi and an Italian mushroom stew
The pork fillet in this dish was one of the best I have had the pleasure of preparing. The smoked mushroom was a delight and the cooking process very interesting to learn about. I trimmed the fat and was guided as to how to properly prepare a pork cut. I also learned how to do the simple things well, like rolling the dish up properly in cling film!
This was the most fun dish to make and if you fancy a trip abroad to try this dish from the pictures alone (sadly the internet hasn’t developed a way of sharing taste virtually yet) I wouldn’t blame you.
Black Forest gateau Malton style
I love a Black Forest gateau and I enjoyed the Malton twist at de-constructing the dish here. While many of the dishes were all about the chance to cook, this one was all about the presentation as well.
My involvement was a bit of a catastrophe as I was asked to quenelle the ice cream that was to accompany the gateau, something that just didn’t come naturally to a clutz like me!
Overall I had a fantastic day, the food was beautiful and fresh, the teaching excellent and the locations we ‘visited’ really did make me want to go there (or in some cases go back) to explore the amazing food we have so close to us. If you like doing your own cooking or just enjoy trying to do some different dishes, Malton Cookery School is a must for you. If you fancy a chance to explore some destinations at a nice slow pace away from the crowds then Inntravel might just help you achieve that.
Disclaimer: I was invited by Inntravel to attend the cooking class at Malton Cookery School. As usual all views are my own.
Categories: Cooking Experiences