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Our day started with a DIY yogurt parfait bar. Of course, it featured Cabot yogurt, but it was also loaded with topping options from fresh fruit and granola to shredded coconut and Divine Chocolate. I’ve found a new favorite in their Dark Chocolate with Pink Himalayan Salt. After mingling with the other attendees and devouring our yogurt we got to work. And by work I mean we watched Chef Jimmy Kennedy prepare some delicious dishes and sampled them. It’s a hard job, but someone’s gotta do it.
First up was BBQ Teriyaki Vegetable and Cheddar Rolls, these were a fun twist on traditional Japanese Negimaki. These rolls will make an awesome light appetizer for any upcoming events, hint: Super Bowl Sunday. Next, and my personal favorite of the day, was Tomato Basil Mac and Cheese. The fresh basil really made the dish pop. I could have eaten three more servings, but that would have been embarrassing considering the amount of food we still had coming. So I restrained myself and just savored my one serving.
This event had two Facebook live sessions. In the first you can see Chef Jimmy prepare the BBQ Teriyaki Vegetable and Cheddar Rolls and the second was packed full of information on cleaning your cast iron pans. Chef Jimmy highlights both Lodge’s cast iron and steel cookware. I loved hearing the tips to keep my great grandmother’s hand me down cast iron pans in tip top shape. You can watch both videos on Cabot Creamery Co-operative’s Facebook page.
We were getting close to lunch time at this point, but before our break we needed to work off some of that cheese we had been eating and make room for lunch. Candace Karu, of Cabot Creamery put on a drum core session for us. I’m sure we could be heard throughout the hotel drumming along to the music on the backs of our chairs.
We dined at Élevage which is inside the Epicurean. This was my second time enjoying a meal here and I can say both times have been top notch. Everything about lunch was perfect. The bread, the salad, soup, and chicken, it’s hard to even pick a favorite. Although the salad might have been the winner. The New York Vintage cheese in it paired perfectly with the crisp apples and sweet poppy seed dressing.
While we were at lunch the theater was set up for our friendly cheese board competition. Tonda Corrente, owner of La Femme Du Fromage, in Orlando shared some of her best cheese board building tips with us then we broke into teams and got to work. The goal was to create the best cheese board from a basket full of everyday items.
Our team’s strategy was to create a cheese board perfect for an after school snack. We planned on the other teams creating elegant cheese boards, so we decided to head the other direction and have fun with it. If your kids happen to bring a few extra friends home from school you could whip up this fun display and win parent of the year. In the end our strategy paid off and our “World’s Best” cheese board came out victorious. We went home with a few new cheese knives and a sleek slate cheese board. I know I can’t wait to use it for my next get together.
The day was a fun break from my normal. I loved learning new recipes and celebrating one of my favorite foods, CHEESE!