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Things heat up as town residents Cook with Class

June 3, 2013

Brazilian beef kabobs with chimichurri sauce. Scallop and watermelon skewers with ginger sauce. Prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spears with blue cheese mayonnaise. Blueberry coconut tart. Pie chips with fresh fruit salsa.

Drooling yet?

Chef Staci Joers whipped up all of the above at the sold-out Cooking with Class workshop at Town Hall on May 30.

The cooking class series, held through the town of Brookfield Parks and Recreation Department, is held on various dates throughout the year.

The last class of the season ended with a bang as 24 residents watched Joers prepare each item with help from her sister, Dawn.

Joers offered several tips as she prepared each item, the scents of lemon, cinnamon, mint and cilantro filling the air.

"Always go for fresh fruits and vegetables over the canned and bottled products," she said as she squeezed fresh garlic in a press. "You will notice the difference in the flavor of your food."

Joers has been teaching cooking since 1992, showing residents of several municipalities the secrets of the kitchen. She has offered workshops in New Berlin, Franklin, Greenfield, Caledonia and Bay View.

"I try to offer fun, creative and delicious foods that use ingredients that are readily available at the grocery store," Joers said. "Cooking at home is less expensive than eating out and is generally better for you."

This was the second go-round for town resident Alex Heller, the only man in the class.

"I enjoy cooking and grilling," Heller said. "I learned a lot in the last class, and I'm always looking for new things to try."

He's looking forward to trying the new recipes and has already incorporated a few of Joers' tips into his everyday cooking habits.

"I switched from iodized table salt to kosher salt," he said. "I can really taste a difference."

No cooking class is complete without sampling the final product. Judging by the silence in the room as everyone tasted Joers' creations, the $30 spent to attend the class was a good investment.

If you missed out on Joers' sessions this season, don't worry. Recipes can be found at CookingWithClass.us and Time Warner customers can watch her in action on Wisconsin On-Demand, Channel 411.

Brazilian Beef Kabobs

1 pound of beef tenderloin, cut into 1-inch cubes

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 lemon

1/2 small onion, finely chopped

8 oz. bacon, cut into squares

salt and pepper to taste

Put tenderloin cubes in a bowl. Mix together olive oil, juice from the lemon half, onion, salt and pepper. Pour over beef cubes and toss to coat. Marinate for 30 minutes or up to two hours.

Soak 16 six-inch bamboo skewers in water while beef marinates. Thread beef onto skewers, alternating with bacon. Grill on medium-high flame to desired rareness.

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