0 In Feast/ Friendship/ Recipes

The Best Conversations Start Over Good Food

Several years back, while living in Virginia, I taught cooking classes for a group of newly married darlings. They were young, beautiful and eager to learn together. We cooked delicious food, laughed, and gathered around the table to enjoy our creations and our connection. It was easily one of the best things I’ve ever whipped up. 

Circa 2013ish. Newly married darlings that I had the utter privilege of sharing some great recipes and great times with.

This summer, I felt in the depths of my culinary soul that it was time for Krisi’s Kitchen to make a resurgence. So, I reunited all of my aprons hiding in the corners of my pantry and gathered some of my girlfriends. 

There were two “whys” bubbling under the surface of my “what”:

To Create and To Connect

I love the idea of creating a meaningful and beautiful space for my friends to savor together. It brings my soul serious joy to cook delicious food and share it around a warm and inviting table all the while connecting women with other women. Isolation is an enemy to God’s best for us. So, it is important that we fight back with intentional connection. Food, shared experiences, people coming together. This is all of life! 

And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.

Hebrews 10:25-27

So here is what it looked like. Three different classes. Three different menus. Three different varieties of attendees. Three different ridiculously fun and meaningful nights. 

I’ll share some of the details if you’re here for it …

The Food

I curated menus for maximum deliciousness and usability. I chose things most requested from my kitchen and that could be used for big family gatherings, college roomies, company for dinner, and of course for those newlywed doll babies. Lest we forget that I am a food geek, I had to throw in the unexpected and of course, handy little bits of foodie facts and hacks.

People who love to eat are always the best people.

Julia Child

The Stations

I moved all the chairs away from my dining table and set up stations around it for us to pair up and food prep. I wanted everything handy so that we could maximize learning and conversation and minimize scrambling around the kitchen. I also wanted my girls to feel pampered and be able to have a visual of the ingredients we were using. One of my friends thoughtfully named this set up “a little cooking spa”. Having stations with all of our ingredients and tools handy provided practice in streamlining our day to day food prep challenges. Feeding our people can feel like a big scary monster hiding under the kitchen sink. So, we needed to experience what it feels like to tame that sucker!

I love this photo because it appears totally posed yet it was totally spontaneous!

The Supplies

Disclaimer: I have been cooking for a large family for like a hundred years so I’ve collected a decent stash of kitchen tools. We love hosting a host of events, holidays and celebrations in our home. So there’s that. Then when you add the fact that my Mother (who lives with us) is also a cook and brings her own acquired goods to the mix… we tend to have more potato peelers than one would ever need. I did count on a few girlfriends to tote their food processor or microplane with them to class when needed. Bless!

The Process

Ahead of time, I wrote out the entire timeline of the evening. Including tips, food hacks, and new ingredients I wanted to highlight. Listen, that may sound extra but, when you get women together for a girls night and offer us, food, sharp tools and wine, some structure will be necessary. I am not a savage after all. I paired everyone up, outfitted them with an apron and off we went. Chopping, sharing, slicing, cohorting, seasoning, chumming, mixing, pulsing, tasting, laughing, learning and connecting. 

The Product

While some ladies put final touches on the food, others washed dishes, some refilled drinks and others transformed our work stations into a dinner table complete with place settings. Then we sat. We consumed our creations and raved at all of the flavors that came from them. We offered our stories. Some old and some new. We shared our desires and downfalls and loved feeling less alone in our journeys. We laughed at each other and ourselves. Our inner foodie was satisfied and our hearts were encouraged. And you must know, that we can all properly cut an onion in nothing flat now.

The Carnita Party Gang

Not every one will host cooking classes. Nor should they. But, every single one of us have been given gifts, talents and value with which to bring to the proverbial table. They were knit into us by a loving and purposeful Heavenly Father. He has intricately created you and I. And is working in the lives of those in our sphere.

For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

Psalm 139:13-14

Mama, Grandmama, High School Angel Baby, Care Free College Beauty, and Newly Married Darling, we have the opportunity to join Him. Using our passions, abilities and interests for purpose beyond just our instagram and facebook feed. Ask God to show you. Ask Him to be the loudest voice you heed. Then listen for what He is stirring in your soul.

Next week I will talk about friendship and insecurity as I share lessons I’ve learned from hosting cooking class. And no it’s not going to be about French sauces and roasting temps.


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