Travel & Cuisine Cooking Class
I have long been looking for a Spanish cooking class in Sevilla that is offered in English because so many of my Sevilla Tapas Tour clients and visiting friends ask me about this. With friends I can oblige with a quick and casual “class” at home, but I really wanted to find a reputable place that could also show people a good time while learning about Spanish cuisine.
A couple of weeks ago I happened to mention this to my friend, tour guide Sam Lister @AndaluciaSam, and he told me about a local company called Travel & Cuisine @TravelCuisine1, run by Amelia Gómez and her husband, chef Jorge Rideo, along with their colleague Meli Rubio. And as my journo friend Fiona Watson @Seville_Writer also has clients who would be interested in cooking classes we arranged to do a class with T & C to see if we would be comfortable recommending them personally.
Well, we not only had a great time – and a great lunch – but we were also very happy with the quality of the class and Travel & Cuisine’s fabulous kitchen classroom. It was exactly what I had been looking for…
We met Amelia at the Triana Market at 9.30 and had a quick coffee and a chat before we set about our shopping. Amelia took us on a brief market tour and gave us a basic introduction to Spanish olives, cheeses and charcuterie, fish and seafood, and vegetables. On this day we were shopping for ingredients to make salmorejo, fried aubergine and a seafood and saffron arroz (similar to a paella, but we don’t call it that in Sevilla).
Our shopping done, we headed over to Travel & Cuisine Headquarters, which is about a ten minute walk from the Triana market, near the Plaza de Magdalena. I loved the bright and cheerful space as soon as we walked in. Lots of natural light, everything fresh, clean and organised. We were shown the sunny terrace where we would be having our meal and were given a bit of instruction about what we were about to prepare and enjoy, along with a little booklet of recipes.
Then we went back inside, donned our aprons, washed our hands carefully, and the class began. We started by prepping the vegetables, fish and seafood for each dish, with each of us given our own task. I got to help clean the chipirones (small squid) and prawns, but somehow managed to nick my finger while cutting tomatoes (no problem – a first aid kit was handy). We all enjoyed the casual hands-on approach to the class. Jorge is that rare combination of good chef and patient teacher, and none of us felt intimidated by his expertise. Amelia translated Jorge’s instructions and also gave us a bit of a history lesson about the origins of Spanish cuisine.
Prep done, we set about doing the actual cooking, again very hands on, with everyone pitching in having a great time. Meli, fluent in English, was in charge of showing us how to make dessert (tortas de aceite) and added her own special charm and enthusiasm to the class. Then it was time to pour a glass of wine and set the table for lunch.
And here are the fabulous (if I say so myself) results of our efforts. We started with an olive oil tasting led by Amelia, which was very informative. In fact, although Sam, Fiona and I have lived in Sevilla for many years, we actually learned quite a lot that day. Then we were served our very own salmorejo and fried berenjenas as starters, though we’d also snacked a bit during the class on a fabulous payoyo (sheep & goat) cheese from Cádiz and fresh diced tomatoes. Then Jorge brought out our seafood rice dish and plated it using a little metal mould. Finally it was time for coffee and our light and crispy tortas de aceite. Delicious!
Travel & Cuisine have kitchen classrooms in Sevilla, Jerez and Zahara de los Atunes. Along with their Spanish cooking classes they offer a variety of classes and courses, including sushi and other Asian cuisines, Italian and Mexican food, and even bread-making classes. T & C will also be happy to create a customised cooking experience to suit your interests.
Travel & Cuisine
Plaza Josefa Reina Puerto 3
(Plaza de la Magdalena) Sevilla
Telf: 954228246 / 617826778