Thursday, May 24, 2012

San Marzano Tomato Sauce Networking

Who says you can't cook in a tech lab?

We tossed together some fresh pasta sauce today in Social Networking class.

Learning to cook... how it effects your health, how it can bring folks together... all worthy goals for learning how to leverage social networking tools.

Here's a summary...

We diced the garlic (showed folks how to peel cloves), and white onion. Chopping ingredients consistently... a finer art

Used two cans of San Marzano tomatoes, and pureed them gently so the sauce had a a thick consistency

In a hot pan we tossed in some extra virgin olive oil and then the garlic and onion. Sauteed until very slightly brown

Added the tomatoes

Brought to a boil, then simmered

Added more garlic, salt, pepper, and about 4 pinches of sugar (it was a very large batch)

Then we added fresh chopped basil

Kept adding here and there, seasoning to taste.

We had to cook the sauce fast. Elapsed time to bring this sauce from start to eating was 40 minutes. Not too shabby.

Charlie Robbins (the BBA kitchen) helped us out by cooking our pasta. We picked it up hot and with some extra virgin olive oil mixed in (keeps it from sticking together).

... and the we ate!

Many folks saw how to make their own fresh pasta sauce for the first time. We fed 16 in class, plus Neil Freeburn, Kevin Morrison, Bill Muench, myself... and a few others... 24 total for $28.01. 

Many thanks again to everyone for making cooking, researching our ingredients on the web while we prepped, and cleaning up a social event too.

Good company and good cooking. A spice of life.


Thursday, May 17, 2012

Good tinkering

We're shifting around classrooms here this Summer. I'll be moving down the hall to a room just like this one...

The trick... lay the room out 'as is' or refit? 

I'm guessing it's time for a refit. We need more community discussion and worktable space. Meeting that need though, we may need to drop 'the pods' of computers we've had.

Here's the current layout below, an arc... bit like the bridge of the Enterprise ; ) We move portable tables around the space in the middle to rip into things as needed (not pictured).

We have 20 computers in the room... and there begins the challenge...

It's worked well over the years, but we're craving more community and project space.

Here's one of the layouts we're giving a think...

The layout solves the needs of community conversations and workspace in the middle, and flow of guest speakers. But... its, for lack of a better term, a bit... 'labby.'

The glass coffee table shown in the middle would actually be a work table. The work benches are a needed addition. I'll be writing up a framework for a new course that threads students deeply (at last) into professional development and tech support here at school and the benches are, like everything else in the room, a minimalist approach at meeting those needs. We'd project on the wall behind the desk, and add a giant whiteboard somewhere... we tend to use it a ton to draft ideas in groups.

We're kicking around designs and would love your help. I don't think were thinking deeply enough about it or seeing all our possibilities.

Submit ideas / comments here on the blog, on Facebook, or send messages to me directly. I can also send the Sketchup model too if that helps.


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Lime chicken tacos w/ fresh salsa

We whipped up some lime chicken tacos with fresh salsa, sour cream, mixed lettuce, fresh cilantro, and fresh lime squeezed on top today in class. We made everything, ate, and cleaned up in class. Easy work with so many contributors!

Cooking, fresh cooking, just takes a bit of planning, prep, some patience and time. Adding in some care, those little details like fresh lime squeezed on top (common in Mexico), and warming the tortillas makes all the difference. We fed 15 today with everyone having seconds for $23.76! We also had a over a half bowl of salsa left over.

Great tinkering for about 55 minutes. Many hands make light work!

Exploring healthy cooking, how to extend it into your life, seeking out new ideas, and getting people involved... a perfect use for social networking tools, and to explore in a Social Networking class.

There's no magic to cooking. It takes effort, time, and patience to build culinary skill.

Tastes good too ; )


-- Posted from batphone

#edchat #education