TOP CHEF: Cooking with Mark

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Chef Anthony
Whatever your cooking capabilities, you can find a cooking course to suit you at Top Chef Cooking Studio in Jumeirah. They offer a wide range of classes, both for adults and children, and even hold private culinary sessions

I opt for the Saturday session with Chef Anthony, who has worked in kitchens in London and Dubai, and I can definitely recommend this class if you’re a lover of chocolate.
I recently joined two others for the two-hour session. Aprons on, chef Anthony starts us off with an introduction to the menu, which features four chocolate treats. We start with raspberry pims; we add ingredients to the food processor to make the genoise, the sponge top for the pims, and it goes into the oven.
Next up is the raspberry jam. This is a first for me, but Anthony made the process look so effortless. Placed in the chiller to set, we then prepare the chocolate cases. Using a brush, I coat each case with a layer of chocolate and leave them to set.

Anthony talks us through the next few steps, which are organised with perfection, allowing us to work on multiple recipes.
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Anthony, Head Chef of Top Chef Cooking Studio, teaches me how to make delicious desserts from chocolate. Photos: Clint Egbert

Anthony talks us through the next few steps, which are organised with perfection, allowing us to work on multiple recipes. It’s like a chocolate production line, and taking turns all of us students go through the final steps. I test my piping skills as the chef needs white and dark chocolate piped onto a prepared baking sheet. To make the mendiant, a type of traditional French confection, I pipe sovereign-size circles of chocolate, and as each one begins to set, pistachio, raisins, dried apricots and almonds are used for decoration.
Next, we are back to the raspberry pims. The jam is piped into the mould — this takes some skill; the first few were too full or not enough. Then more chocolate is poured over the raspberry, the excess expertly removed by Anthony, and then left to cool and set.
Three down, the final recipe is the passion fruit truffles, where the fresh cream is combined with passion fruit puree then mixed with chocolate to make a ganache, and chilled until set. Once set, the ganache is rolled into balls, dipped in more chocolate then rolled in cocoa powder. Did I mention this is a chocolate lover’s dream?

The details There are a number of classes at Top Chef, from Vegetarian to Mini Chef. Prices vary.

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Chef Anthony, Head Chef of Top Chef Cooking Studio. Photo Clint Egbert

OTHERS CLASSES TO TRY

Where: SKILLDEER, DUBAI MEXICAN VEGAN COOKING CLASS

What: During the two-hour course you will learn how to make Rainbow Raw spring rolls with garlic avocado sauce. Chef Catalina, a culinary instructor, private chef and bloggers will give you lots of top tips on using different ingredients to prepare raw food.
Price: Dh285 per person.
Location: Lessons take place at the chef’s home, Green Community West. (As this is a private address the location is shared upon booking).
Contact: 800333

Where: THE BOMBAY BRASSERIE COOKERY CLASS

What: Learn how to create Bombay Brasserie’s signature dishes, including chicken tikka masala, butter chicken, and beef pepper fry. Then you can enjoy an unlimited selection of its a la carte menu from 1-4pm. You will also receive a chef’s apron and hat as well as a selection of spices so you can recreate these dishes at home.
Price: Dh695 per person.
Location: Taj Dubai Hotel.
Contact: tajhotels.com

Where: SCAFA, DUBAI’S SCHOOL OF CULINARY AND FINISHING ARTS

What: From wannabe chefs and kids to bloggers, all levels of ability are catered for. The school offers a full-service in culinary arts courses. Price: Dh525 per person.
Location: JLT, Dubai
Contact: 04-3794044

 

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