Amandine - Paris, 23 Oct 2013 : I spent an amazing time learning from Terresa about food, taste, and basically way of life. She is so inspiring, inventive and generous, cooking with her is a real experience, the kind of experience that you know it will change something in your life. Cooking was fun, and tasting was just amazing.
Cindy and Alex - Texas, 9 Oct 2013 : We spent several wonderful days in early October with Terresa. She is an amazing chef and wonderful ambassador for Paris. We visited an incredible bakery, meat market, open air food market ,where we purchased lovely vegetables from local purveyors, and a cheese shop. We have been to Paris many times and were delighted to visit areas for the first time. After the tour we went to her apartment to prepare all this lovely food. Terresa does more than instruct. She teaches you how to take simple ingredients and create delicious food using ingredients you would be familiar with but never think to use in these dishes. We prepared kale pasta, a red cabbage salad, kale stems (which were delicious) and an apple tatin. She paired the food with lovely organic wines and cheese.
The next day we took the train to the Loire Valley and visited an organic winery and learned about the wine harvest which was in progress. It was very interesting to see the differences in the production of organic wine and visit with the local people who were working the harvest. Christophe, who owns the label and produces the wine, was wonderful and full of information about natural wine production. It was really interesting to visit the local cave where he stores wines and his farmhouse. His wines La Lunotte, were delicious and he was a gracious host. We also prepared a lovely vegetable bread soup and poached pears which we shared with the people who were involved with the harvest. There is a great difference between working for someone and friends working together. If you would like to depart from an orchestrated, scripted wine tasting and discover what a day in the life of a dedicated French winemaker is like, we encourage you to take this trip with Terresa.
We love to cook and always try to find interesting cooking classes when we travel. We certainly would rank our time with Terresa at the top of the list not only because of what we learned but it was a real pleasure meeting someone who is so knowledgeable and dedicated to her passion.
Julien Levallois - Paris, 30 Septembre 2013 : I had an amazing time, cooking and sharing ideas and food with you! I walked out of your place even more convinced that food was so important and that we should really pay attention to what we're cooking and how we're doing it! Thank you very much for the wonderful time spent together! I made the soup last nights because a few friends came over, and they found it delicious! I was both pleased and proud to share it with them!
Mary and Steve - Bay Area, 25 September 2013 : Thank you so much for the tour you took us on and also the suggestions you told us about. We were able to try a few of them during our time in Paris. It would be wonderful to see you again when you are in the Bay area - I look forward to a chance to see you work your magic in the kitchen!
Megan, James, Karina, Dave - Australia, 21 August 2013 : Before heading off on our recent French adventure I trawled through the pages of David Lebovitz’s Living the Sweet Life in Paris blog for veggie friendly suggestions. An American living in Paris, David has gained wide acclaim and is well known as the blogger authority on all things Paris food. Check out his blog for veggie friendly suggestions here.
I was super excited when I discovered, through David, that there was actually an organic vegetarian cooking teacher offering classes in Paris. Things worked out even better when our trip coincided with Terresa’s annual summer escape to the countryside and our stay in the Loire Valley. Another American in Paris, Terresa’s business is called La Cucina di Terresa. Since putting down roots in Paris in 1996 she has developed a wonderful operation focused on promoting local artisan food and wine producers and guiding visitors through markets and home style healthy and organic French cuisine... continue reading on Megan's blog veggiesandme.com : part 1 and part 2.
Brigitte et Pascal Becker - Paris, France, 8 July, 2013 : Nous sommes arrivés chez Terresa dans son petit appartement parisien et, tout de suite, elle a su nous mettre à l'aise et créer une atmosphère chaleureuse et décontractée. Nous avons bavarde de choses et d'autres et fait connaissance tout en commençant à préparer notre dîner avec un verre de vin. Terresa avait choisi pour nous à la fois pour l'entrée, le plat de résistance et le dessert des produits connus de nous (fenouil, artichaut, amandes) mais préparés de façon originale et totalement déconcertante pour nous deux! Nous avons tout fait à la main (pas de robot utilisé!) sous la guidance bienveillante et attentionnée de Terresa qui est à la fois patiente et très organisée dans le petit espace de sa cuisine. Nous avons appris à utiliser des outils de cuisine bien spécifiques comme le zesteur ou le « nut milk bag » que nous ne possédions pas mais qui nous semblent maintenant indispensables ! Sans compter le minuteur qui décharge l'attention pour les temps de cuisson très courts. Le résultât de nos efforts a été très intéressant, plein de saveurs juxtaposées à tel point que dès la dégustation de notre entrée de fenouil, nous n'avions presque plus faim ! Tout a été à la fois très original et goûteux mais, pour moi, la révélation a été le dessert! Au moment de la préparation, je n'avais jamais mondé d'amandes et j'ai adoré découvrir la signification de ce terme qui n'avait pas de réalité pour moi auparavant. L'aspect visuel de la pane cotta (blancmanger), au montage final, avec ses 3 couleurs très italiennes (blanc de l'amande, vert du basilic et rouge des cerises) était déjà très plaisant et, à la dégustation, la découverte des 3 goûts assemblés ne m'a pas déçue et a été une vraie découverte gustative: un vrai coup de cœur, que je referai dès que j'aurai un « nut milk bag »! Terresa nous a gentiment fait parvenir ensuite par mail les recettes que nous avions suivies chez elle et c'est avec plaisir que nous reviendrions une seconde fois pour en apprendre plus. Le côté bi-culturel de la leçon de cuisine nous a également beaucoup plu : c'est un plus que nous, avons beaucoup apprécié. Ce soir-là, nous avons été gourmands, végétariens et internationaux : un vrai plaisir !
Jen and Robert Driscoll - Boston, July 3, 2013 : I feel I will use what I learned. Terresa's passion for the importance of what one puts in their body is exciting & motivating. I have been telling everyone about what we made…it was delightful ! The dishes we made were unique but still realistic to make at home. The kitchen was small, but authentic and worked out just fine ! I left feeling satisfied by the whole experience including the lesson, the delicious food, and our conversation together. It was perfect !
Kristyn Klamut - States, June 27, 2013 : I was told by many that as a vegetarian I would not be able to properly enjoy the cuisine of Paris, but that was definitely proven wrong by my experience cooking with Terresa ! She was incredibly warm and friendly from start to finish and was a lot of fun to cook with. She was even so kind as to email us a list of personal recommendations of some of her favorite spots in the city to supplement the rest of our trip. I would recommend this class to anyone !
Lexi JB - New York, June 1, 2013 : The second my family and I walked through the door we were greeted with warm hugs (instantly I felt as if we had known Terresa forever) and the smell of fresh ingredients. Terresa had gone to the market that very day to buy everything fresh that we needed. My family loves to cook and bake, but never had we made such delicious (magazine cover worthy) food! Terresa made everything fun and easy having measured the ingredients before our arrival. While preparing the meal, Terresa offered baguette with the most delicious and creamiest goat cheese I had ever tasted, that would later be topped onto our magnificent beat salads. She happily added that she "looks the other way" when people nibble. That was good to know once the fresh strawberries were used for the incredible strawberry tart. The atmosphere was relaxed and the conversation and company were marvelous. Terresa also made it very easy to accommodate my mom's sensitive stomach by setting aside a dish of plain ravioli and making a separate tart crust into a cookie (which I tried and was as equally delicious as the tart)! Having dined at some of the greatest restaurants in Paris, this by far was my favorite place to dine. I loved that we were able to have an intimate cooking session with my family exclusively and Terresa was the perfect teacher to have it with. I highly suggest this for anyone visiting Paris or residing in Paris. I will definitely be making the meals I learned once returning home. It was an experience from my trip that will be most memorable!
Estefania and David - Paris, April 2013 : We did enjoy very much this cooking class. It was a very special birthday present, thought to enjoy and also to broaden our horizon about how to cook vegan. In a nutshell: it was a successful evening in every way. First of all the reception of Teresa in her flat was very pleasant and conversation started easily around the planning of the evening. The atmosphere was easygoing and totally open-minded at all time and even living in Paris ourselves we were surprised by the amount of professional equipment one can store in limited space. Following our suggestions we made ravioli from scratch, filled with healthy greens and Terresa proposed a Farinata for starters which we will include in our cooking book for sure. Easy to prepare, quick to cook and great outcome. What more can you ask for? But the absolute highlight of the evening turned out to be the dessert. As we wanted to prepare a Black Forest Cake the challenge was to find a substitute for the cream. And Teressa did a great job and we found ourselves enjoying a perfect cake at the end of a wonderful meal. We strongly recommend this class to anybody who wants to learn more tips and tricks when it comes to cooking plant-based. You will even get all the recipes and useful infos about all the equipment used.
Adeline et Yoann Moriconi - Lyon, April 2013 : Encore merci pour ton accueil chaleureux et simple, pour ton cours précis et organisé, pour tes idées nombreuses et savoureuses, pour tes petits "trucs" bien pratiques... bref, merci pour avoir fait danser nos papilles, et enchanter nos pupilles !! Nous sommes repartis avec l'estomac et le coeur remplis de bonheur, car c'est ça la bonne cuisine : de belles odeurs, couleurs, saveurs, mais aussi et surtout de belles rencontres, de beaux échanges... Nous avons hâte de faire goûter la farinata, le risotto et les baci di dama à nos proches !!! Au plaisir de redécouvrir à tes côtés de nouvelles recettes.
Miguel et Marie-Aude - Paris, Mars 2013 : The pleasure was ours, thank you very much for the training and diner, I spent a marvelous evening. The meal was very good, the tips very usefull, a welcoming little appartment and all in a nice atmosphere. La cucina di terresa is more than a cooking class, it is a wonderfull travel among natural wisdom, creativity and vege savor.
Kit, Tomi, Morgan, Josh, Terri, Claudia, Donna, Danan, Candice, Karen, Rita - West Coast cooking class series, Feb - March, 2013 : A belated thank you for the fabulous cooking class at Mary's house a month ago. I learned lots and loved your infectious enthusiasm and respect for all things vegetal. Thank you for the written recipes and links. || Thank you so much for doing a cooking class at Vicki's. It was so much fun. || Thank you so much for another unforgettable evening! Your passion and kindness are overwhelming and I can't wait to see you again in the future! || I absolutely loved your torta caprese and will do my best when I bake my own this weekend. :) It was very nice to meet you. I thoroughly enjoyed the evening. || Thank you for directing a great night of cooking, eating and conversation! || we all so enjoyed your visit and your fabulous recipes! Morgan and I both tackled the orecchiette again with the leftover pasta. we have work yet to do, but the taste was fabulous. we tossed it with a lovely pesto sauce. || So loved having you....the girls loved it too. You are an amazing woman.... || Just wanted to thank you for bringing such a wonderful evening to my home. Nothing better than the combination of lovely friends and lovely food. Let's do it again next year! || Just a note to thank you for a fabulous evening. I'm so impressed by your culinary skills which you presented with such grace and flare! The food- delish. The banter - lively. The experience - quite memorable. I can't wait to try out your teachings! || Thank you, Terresa, for your wonderful teaching, recipes and menu! I couldn't have asked for a lovelier group with whom to share the experience. I felt utterly welcomed and at home with you all, and I do hope we will break bread together again. For now, I am off to pick up some almonds so I can bake the Torta Caprese. || Thank you Terresa for the wonderful experience. The recipes will be treasured! || I'm so happy to have had the opportunity to meet you and cook together. You're a fabulous chef and teacher; passionate, organized, detailed, generous and fun! I believe you impart much more than you even realize. And I love your forthrightness. || Wanted to give you the results of my Easter Sunday day using the menu from Teresa. First of all, it was delicious. There was only one element missing, a prep assistant (s). I deviated a bit on the ingredients of the Quique, I used rainbow Chard only, but it was still just as delicous. My color was lighter green, oddly enough. But the flavor was excellent. My husband loved the Fenell and Radish salad. I was tired after the meal and slept like a baby. Anytime, you all want to get together again, let me know. I am up and have no problem in hosting. My kitchen is not as big as Donna's but it will suffice. || Claudia Cyper - Folsom, CA, Terresa is not only one of the best chefs I have ever known, but she is also the absolute most incredible woman. I had two cooking classes with her - one in Paris when I was on vacation and again in California when she was traveling by. Both are memories I will never forget! Terresa shows up with the ingredients and a huge smile. She immediately felt like family. From there she told us about the nature of the food and the wine pairings, and weaved them in with personal stories of living in France and writing a book. The atmosphere was fun, energetic, and lovely...just the type of environment you want for a whole afternoon of cooking. And a whole afternoon we did! We made everything from scratch, from the pasta noodles to the sauces, the appetizers, salads, and most decadent desserts. And as I mentioned, this woman can cook!! The evening ended with two promises from Terresa: that she would send us the recipes so we could continue to practice (it does make perfect), and the second to keep in touch. And I most certainly will do just that!
Donna and Jessica - Australia, December 2012 : I found the salad particularly interesting, it was different from my usual repertoire and delicious. It was easily the best salad we ate in France. In addition my daughter ate it and she normally avoids lettuce! I also enjoyed the other recipes and the opportunity to try fromage blanc and comte.
Your method of using lemon rind, used over the pizza di scarola was tasty and will be useful in other dishes .The orange tea was also different and a great idea which I will use. I loved observing how your kitchen was organised. In addition I thought it was a great bonus that the class was held in your apartment, much more interesting than a commercial kitchen! I found the price expensive, but when you consider the individual attention, the hands on nature of the classes and the quality produce used then the price is worth it. Also, your offer to answer further questions is generous.
Elizabeth Wiener - NY, October 2012 : I had an absolutely wonderful time cooking with you last weekend. I learned so much, and overall it was one of the best experiences I've had so far in Paris. Thank you again for everything.
Daniela Gencareli - Australia, September, 2012 : The recipes were simple to follow, and felt achievable. The meal tasted as good as it smelled and looked!It was inspiring to see that anyone can cook in any size kitchen (Terresa's being quite cozy). It felt authentic and only added to the experience. At no stage did Terresa make the class about ‘time’- her focus was the food experience first and foremost. The ingredients were of a high quaility, the lesson informative, the meal delightful to eat, an excellent organic wine and company that felt like family. It was definitly worth the $.
Terry Nathanson & Roberta Omin - NY, June, 2012 : The lesson was very informative from the layering of different tastes and combinations of foods and herbs to how to do various tasks (cutting, mortor and pestle, food mill, making almond milk, roasting and smoking vegetables). We loved the final sensual look and taste of what we prepared. When we got home we went to our farmers market instead of the in-store organic market. I also trusted the farmers who explained they grow produce without pesticides, even though they aren’t certified organic due to the lengthy process and problems associated with that. And I plan on buying my husband a belated gift of kitchen accessories to add to our cooking experiences at home. In addition, we appreciated your delightful and real company and conversation over our gourmet vegetarian meal.
Tamara, Earl, Aviva - East Coast, May 2012 : Very Informative class. We learned how to sharpen knives, tips for cutting, etc. Also learned to use both the beet and the leaves, the lemon juice and the peels, etc. Loved your community garden and how dedicated you are to leaving nothing to waste and composting. Yesterday I bought a new mortor and pestle, a knife sharpener, and a salad spinner. Now I ordered the zester. We were so inspired! I planted more vegetables than I did last summer and even planted two blueberry bushes! Now I need to get serious about composting. Aviva made bruschetta for her friend the first night she was back in Chicago. We made a salad from our garden and tried to add touches you would use. Made olive oil infused with mint. Terrific and delicious recipes. Working in your cozy kitchen was a great lesson in learning how to live within your means and make every inch count. So memorable! Best meal we had in Paris!
Joanna and Austin - Colorado, May 2012 : You were a great hostess and teacher and we had a great time. We viewed this as "our intimate vegetarian cooking class with great company in a tiny apartment!" I have never made homemade almond milk and loved the idea to use agar agar to thicken things without gelatin! Also loved the combinations of flavors which I would never have imagined could work together so well, especially in the salad, the bruschetta & the dessert. I am a more inspired to cook seasonally & creatively when I can, but also to love the simplicity of roasted vegetables, and to visit our local farmers markets more often.
Jo-Ann Berry - Oklahoma, May 2012 : It is more than a class, much more of a wider experience. Each of us learned something – some of our group cook more than others, but I think the bruschetta was a big enough hit that the les frequent cooks will add it to their repertoire. The recipes are added to my file – everything was worth eating agai ! The small kitchen added to the experience – a tad bigger would have been OK, but it was interesting to have the class in somebody’s everyday kitchen and work with what was at hand there.
Jayne Becker - NY, April 2012 : I have taken several group classes over the years, and I enjoyed our private class because it afforded individualized attention, the opportunity to participate in planning the menu, and the forum to ask many questions, even those unrelated to the task at hand. I found you to be friendly, informative, and extremely patient with our nine-year-old granddaughter who loves to invent her own concoctions. I think she came away with a new sense of vegetable combinations. She loved the goat cheese and clementine jam bruschetta so much that she made us drive all around Paris collecting the ingredients to take home so that she can make them for her family.
Jessie Miller - Massachusetts, April 2012 : It felt like a privilege to be invited into a real home and this was particularly thrilling for Rori. I learned much not just about cooking and shopping in the markets. I really learned a lot about what it is like to live in Paris. And I wish I was in a position to take more classes from you. I will have to settle for your cookbook. Your generosity of spirit is priceless.
Ann Struve - States, March 2012 : Nice welcome from the hustle and bustle of Paris. Enjoyed the class very much especially the simplicity of it. Food was delicious and I would recommend to a friend.
Anne et Alex - Paris, February 2012 : Merci pour ce super moment passé en ta compagnie, c'était très agréable ! Tu nous a conquis par ton accueil chaleureux, ta générosité et nous sommes repartis remplis d'idées et d'inspirations grâce à tes précieux conseils :) d'ailleurs le microplane zesteur ainsi qu'un petit pinceau comme le tien sont en commande !! Merci pour les recettes que nous reproduirons avec plaisir et gourmandise; la farine de pois chiche a déjà intégré notre placard à provisions... et encore un merci pour les photos, souvenirs d'une belle rencontre !
Celine Chew - London, January 2012 : Thank you for a really lovely time. We had such a great time.
Mele-Ann - Germany, January 2012 : Thank you very much for such an enjoyable evening. You should know that I made the Lambs lettuce and clementine salad almost on a daily basis when I got back to Germany.
Stephan Allard - Australia, January 2012 : What a delightful experience! It was a real pleasure to spend an evening with Terresa who welcomed us into her home and shared with us the delights of organic vegetarian cooking. A true "gourmand" myself and fond of heavy, meat laden comfort food, I have always been hesitant to make a full meal out of vegetables only. The meal we prepared with Terresa's guidance was both complete (5-a-day) and fully satisfying; it made use of regular vegetables, herbs and spices in tasty combination (I think I had an epiphany when I ate the home made tapenade).
There was a natural flow to the evening. I found Terresa to be well versed and able to answer all cooking questions candidly and informatively. A thank you to Terresa for inspiring an interest and giving me more confidence in exploring the world of vegetarianism.
Abby Bird - States, December 2011 : It was an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime experience that I am so glad that I found. It was the perfect capstone to a busy business trip to France and a great way to relax and enjoy Paris. The food and wine were both superlative. I can’t wait for this weekend to cook again and I’ve already had requests to share the food and the recipes.
Daniel Owens - Paris, France, December 2011 : Your cooking explanations and instructions were excellent; I am quite the hands on learner so that was great. The seasonal side of the recipes was fantastic. I enjoyed theb dishes all around. It was fun between friends and strangers. It was very relaxed, one felt half as though they were hanging out and half at a class. That was on of the wonderful things about it. I would have loved to go on longer if I didn't have to catch the metro.
Jerri - States, December 2011 : The information you shared during the class has helped form a foundation for my, hopefully, ever growing knowledge of plant-based nurtition. We wished we could have stayed and enjoyed your company longer. I have shared the details of our cooking class with friends, it was a highlight of my trip to Paris. I would take another class with you if time permits next time I am in Paris.
Megan Lord - Oregon, December 2011 : I just want you to know how wonderful your class was and that it was the highlight of our trip to Paris. It was so exciting to taste such healthy savory foods that seemed so simple. I came home yesterday and immediately wanted to stock my frig with wonderful winter vegetables and good olive oil. We truly had a great time and loved spending the day with you.
Eve Switzer - Oklahoma, December 2011 : We can honestly say that our day spent with you was one of the highlights of our trip. My family wants the escarole tart for dinner on Saturday night. Again, thanks so much for a wonderful day and we do hope to bring the kids to you in the not-too-distant future.
Lori and Farkley - Australia, November 2011 : We had a ball learning to cook new recipes and checking out the lovely markets with you. It was definitely one of the highlights of our trip. And the gluten free bread was the best! We spent our last night in Paris with the bread, wine and cheese underneath the Eiffel Tower watching the lights dance! Thank you, thank you, thank you many times over for the education you gave us on food. My eye is definitely more aware and selective now when I go shopping.
Kelly Woods - Texas, November 2011 : Thank you so much for the cooking class - we had such a great time with you! Your class was truly enjoyable - it is easy to see why 5 hours went by so quickly. I feel I could have stayed for hours and hours if you had let me...... I felt so at home. I am so excited to make the Apple Tart for my family this week.... wish me luck! Thanks again for the wonderful time.
Pamela Gurock - NYC, Novmeber 2011 : Dear Terresa, thanks again for a wonderful cooking day. I had a great time and look forward to trying out some of the recipes we made together. Should you get to NYC I would be happy to try and get some friends together for another class, but I am sure it would not have the charm of your apartment.
Sandrine Draignau - Paris, November 2011 : Merci encore pour cette journée dans une cuisine incroyable, j'ai été ravie de la passer avec toi et de te retrouver. J'ai déjà vanter tes mérites et ton savoir-faire à mes collègues,
Sara Hohn - NYC, November 2011 : I wanted to let you know what a wonderful time I had on our tour. It was absolutely one of the highlights of my trip to Paris.
Colleen - Germany, November 2011 : I loved the stroll through the market checking out the heirloom, organic vegetables and sampling the local cheeses! It's clear you have a wealth of knowledge about food, cooking and wine and your passion to share it is invigorating! The creative ways you use the parts of vegetables I would normally throw away (or give to the rabbits) was enlightening however, and I have started incorporating more of that into my everyday meal planning. All the food was delicious; I've made all three courses at home in the few weeks since the class with great results.The size of your kitchen was surprising initially, but its contents and creative use of space were inspiring. I find myself thinking of new ways to alter old dishes or to try out new ingredients or combinations. I especially love the curled, dried lemon rind for sprinkling on top of salads, pasta, steamed veggies etc. I really enjoyed our time together, you made my first cooking class experience worthwhile and definitely memorable!
Gayan and Chloe - Sydney, October 2011 : We are back and refreshed in Sydney. As promised, some photos are attached from our day with you. As Chloe mentioned in her TripAdvisor review, it was a very inspiring experience for both of us.
Lesley and Ceredyn - New Zealand, Sept 2011 : Affirmation of the joy of vegetarian food, preparing, sharing and caring. Lemon curls with green salad, stuffed capsicums with parsley and pinenuts delicious! For us (in hindsight) a complete day would have enriched us further than the 1/2 day. Even a week may happen in the future! Enjoyed the full discussions on food politics and life in general. No visito should visit Paris without undertaking this activity, it grounds one to the local culture quickly.Joy Barber - Canada, Sept 2011 : Your class was one of the highlights of our stay in Paris. It exceeded my expectations. I came away with a new appreciation of the combinations of spices, salt, cheese - so much more. The parsley salad and brushetta with the French wine and French cheese and ... I've put your recipes in my recipe file to be used and shared. I now wear my apron (it's at least 10 years old and very happy to finally be a part of my kitchen). The extra hour that we sat and talked was really a plus.
Julia Christensen - Canada, Sept 2011 : My day with you, Terresa, was one of the highlights of my time in Paris. Your warm and welcoming personality put me at ease straight away. I wish you all the best as you expand your business and write all your wonderful recipes in a book to share with the world.
Janet B. - Canada, July 2011 : I had a magnifique time in Paris and thoroughly enjoyed your class. I could taste all the delicious dishes we made for a long time after and appreciated picking up your many words of advice on cooking methods and indredients. My son and many friends are veggies and can't wait for me to make our meal again.
Jenna & Chris Socci - States, July 2011 : Terresa’s class exceeded all our expectations!!! plus more! And we truly enjoyed Terresa's company! We began learning from the moment we walked into the market with Terresa. We were able to embrace the Parisian lifestyle immediately. We enjoyed learning how to use the whole vegetable/fruit/nut and not let any go to waste. We will pass this knowledge on to our friends and family for years to come. We enjoyed the intimacy of the apartment and were intrigued by her artistic way of life. The recipes were mind-blowing-ly delicious! We look forward to preparing them again. Terresa taught us practical culinary techniques that we will utilize in our everyday cooking. We absolutely enjoyed every second with you and hope to do it again real soon! :)
the Bedfords - Australia, July 2011: We had a wonderful day with Terresa, learnt a whole lot, visited some wonderful little gourmet shops on our tour with Terresa as our guide. I would recommend doing the whole day as it was a perfect end to our holiday. Thank you for a truly perfect day.
Dan and Cathy - States, July 2011 : We've been talking about the blancmange since we got home, and are looking forward to trying it on our own! We had such a wonderful time at the cooking class; it was one of the highlights of our trip.
C. Ellis - Australia, July 2011 : Although conversation, and eating/drinking were the heart and soul of our day, I remember several cooking tips. My favourite dish was the dessert, followed by the little pesto appetizers, and the carrot/walnut dip. Thanks for all your recommendations, and general kindness.
Catherine Coates - East Coast, June 2011 : I continue to be reminded that it doesn't take a giant kitchen to prepare great food. The classes were fun and different from the hundreds (thousands) of other cooking classes I have taken. The website gave me a general sense of what to expect but not how much fun (and work) it would be. It was great to wander little streets that I had not been on or got to see in a new light.
Katie Kalmikoff, June 2011 - San Francisco by way of Germany : The whole experience was so much fun. It was wonderful to work with you Terresa. I learned so much and you were a joy to spend the day with, cooking and exploring the French food markets and shops.
Sarah and Eric - Bay Area, May 2011 : We truly enjoyed our market and cooking experience with you - it was absolutely a highlight from our trip. I can't wait to try out the recipes and new techniques we learned at home! We look forward to hearing of your next trip to the Bay Area!
Diane Servos - NYC, May 2011 : How can we ever thank you for such an incredible day. We loved every morsel. I still taste the almond milk so tummy. We are both anxious to get home and try our new techniques. Such awesome memories.
Harshu and Rohit - India, April 2011 : It was a real pleasure cooking with you. I must admit that in the morning I was wondering how I would manage 5 hours in the 'kitchen' but after our salad I was concerned that there were only 2 hrs of class remaining! By the way, we also went to the West Country crepe place and it was fantastic. We will drop by again when we are in Paris.
Ed and Regan - Singapour, April 2011 : Thank you again for a wonderful day yesterday! We both had a very enjoyable and memorable experience with you!!
Megan Fedor - Sacramento by way of Essex, January 2011 : Cooking with Terresa was, without a doubt, the absolute greatest highlight of my family’s Paris adventure. We spent the day in the most wonderful company, learning not just how to make Chestnut Soup and Winter Greens Ravioli, but also a vast number of tips and tricks that I’ve already found useful in my day to day kitchen. From the moment we met Terresa, we knew we would be in for a culinary treat. Everything-from buying fresh groceries at the local farmer’s market to swapping stories while the ravioli boiled-accumulated into creating a magical and fabulous day. It was, truly, the perfect day with food, fun, and certainly new friends. The memories from that day with Terresa will be cherished for years to come.
Marise and Celia Berg - Brazil, October 2010 : I hope I can be sklilful at translating into words the amazing experience that we had with you. I’ll try my best. I want to thank you for your generosity, sharing with me your gorgeous point of view about the vegetarian cooking and way of living. The cooking class was a rich experience because of the quality of the components, the creative recipes and your amazing company. I’m inspired by your good taste and courtesy.
Sue Baum - San Francisco, September 2010 : I just returned from France and must say that I am still shaking my head in wonderment at how unique and special my experience was. Why?, you may ask. The answer is this: TERRESA. I hired Terresa to pick my friend and me up at the Charles De Gaulle airport to help us negotiate a car rental and to drive with us to the Loire Valley. Thus began our adventure. Terresa planned our holiday to perfection. She stopped en route to take us to an open air market to pick up vegetables for our evening meal. That was just the start. We went to another town to a boulangerie for a special bread she wanted us to experience. Of course we stopped for lunch. Then onward for groceries so that she could prepare dinner for us at our French farm house. Terresa is a "foodie" and knows how to share her knowledge and enthusiasm. Over the period of three days Terresa took us to three wineries where she had made appointments with the winemakers, more markets, and to a goat farm to purchase amazing goat cheese. Each situation was a learning experience.
Speaking of learning, the cherry on top was a two and a half hour cooking class and eating extravaganza whilst drinking the delicious wines from our excursions. She left us with an itinerary for the rest of our trip so that we wouldn't waste precious time figuring out how best to pack in what sites we wanted to see. Being on our own was a cinch after we had had the luxury of our master tour guide. I can't give enough kudos to Terresa.My only disappointment was that I didn't hire her for a day in Paris. That must wait until next time.
Cheri Paquin - East Coast, September 2010 : My recent trip to France proved to be an unforgettable experience primarily due to Terresa's extraordinaire gift of finding the best markets to shop for the freshest foods; her expertise in locating just the right winemakers to set up wine tastings with and generally her passion for her natural cooking. After making many advance arrangements in the Loire Valley, Terresa was our guide and translator as we discovered many "out of the way" treasure spots from the best boulangeries to purchase macaroons, to the specialty goat cheeses right from the farm. Our days of wandering the French countryside, ended in a magnificent and savory cooking lesson personalized to our particular tastes. Très mangnificent.
Lisa Bonner - New York, September 2010 : Terresa gave fantastic instructions & helpful hints that are easy to remember and follow. She also made sure to accommodate my gluten-free diet and gave fantastic & delicious subtstitutions. She gave a history of the foods, alternatives and various ways to prepare certain dishes. I like the fact that in addition to th food, Terresa coupled each course with a delicious wine & gave information about why the pairings worked. I also found that Terresa had a superb knowledge about every different vegetable, grain, seasonal availability, etc. She also met us the next day and toook us to a "BioMarché" to help us shop for items to stock in our kitchen back home. This was a very pleasant surprise and a nice touch! Bravo!
Sue Baum - San Francisco, August 2010I : just returned from France and must say that I am still shaking my head in wonderment at how unique and special my experience was. Why?, you may ask. The answer is this: TERRESA. I hired Terresa to pick my friend and me up at the Charles De Gaulle airport to help us negotiate a car rental and to drive with us to the Loire Valley. Thus began our adventure. Terresa planned our holiday to perfection. She stopped en route to take us to an open air market to pick up vegetables for our evening meal. That was just the start. We went to another town to a boulangerie for a special bread she wanted us to experience. Of course we stopped for lunch . Then onward for groceries so that she could prepare dinner for us at our French farm house. Terresa is a "foodie" and knows how to share her knowledge and enthusiasm. Over the period of three days Terresa took us to three wineries where she had made appointments with the winemakers, more markets, and to a goat farm to purchase amazing goat cheese. Each situation was a learning experience. Speaking of learning, the cherry on top was a two and a half hour cooking class and eating extravaganza whilst drinking the delicious wines from our excursions. She left us with an itinerary for the rest of our trip so that we wouldn't waste precious time figuring out how best to pack in what sites we wanted to see. Being on our own was a cinch after we had had the luxury of our master tour guide. I can't give enough kudos to Terresa. My only disappointment was that I didn't hire her for a day in Paris. That must wait until next time.
Christine Jolley - Seattle, August 2010 : We both had a lovely day with you. It was nice to eat with someone who had so much in common with us. Cooking in your home made it like eating with friends. Happy to find a vegetarian cooking class in Paris & your class lived up to my expectations. We learned so much. Particularly that an entire meal can be made using all natural ingrediants. We have been trying to stay away from processed food. Wonderful recipes using real ingrediants. The outcome was delicious. Very informative. We learned so many new cooking techniques. With your cooking class in mind, my approach to grocery shopping and cooking has changed for the better. Before meeting you, we were attempting to steer clear of processed food. Your cooking class reiterated that it is possible & relatively easy to cook using real, organic foods. I look forward to preparing the recipes in my own kitchen. I especially want to make the radish tart. I have made the Budwig's Cream breakfast & it was delicious. Thank you!!
Mike and Carolyn Sugimoto, Switzerland, July 2010 : Let me just say what a splendid day we had with you. You really have a way with children, too, being so attentive. Michael and Jack thoroughly enjoyed themselves, as did Carolyn and me. We have made the bruschetta a few times for guests (the kids really love that recipe) and are eager to try the raviloli and almond dessert, as well. Thank-you for opening your home to us and being so kind to us.
Jason Bennet - Hong Kong, June 2010 : The lesson was very informative. All questions were answered. If Terresa didn't know an answer immediately, she made sure to find out before leaving the class. Her follow-up e-mails with links to food/drink information were very much appreciated. She offered many suggestions to substitute ingredients or even improvising a bit when trying these recipes at home. The discussions of wine pairings and the function of wine with food during a meal were inspiring. Terresa spoke with conviction about this topic and really encouraged me to think about the different wines I would encounter for the remainder of my trip in France. The recipes and the array of flavors really got me excited about the possibilities of using the freshest ingredients possible while cooking. It was a true "festival of flavors."I was happy to be cooking in a small, intimate setting because it reflects the size of kitchen/living space that I currently live in. Terresa utilizes her kitchen and living spaces quite efficiently.
David and Kathryn Blandford - Eastern Canada, June 2010 : Terresa, we really did not know what to expect before we met you and had the pleasure of spending the day with you cooking and chatting about food, wines and numerous other topics. The course was one of the highlights of our trip to Paris. We have highly recommended it to a number of our freinds. All the best in your future savoury endeavors.
Stephanie Pratt, East Coast - June 2010 : I can’t tell you how much I appreciated and enjoyed the class I took with you. I’m sure that by now Alex is tired of hearing me preface statements about cooking with “But Terresa said…” I have made the cilantro bruschetta several times, and also the beet salad and blancmange, all to rave reviews. You were patient and made sure that I tried to do just about everything so that I could duplicate it at home. And I like the fact that you provided so many possible variants on the same recipe so that I can use what is available from season to season. I was a bit skeptical at first about the blancmange with basil coulis, but it was absolutely delicious. In Italy, I learned to make pannacotta, but the blancmange was even better-tasting, AND much more healthful. I loved the roasted beet salad, which was a marvelous mix of colors, flavors, and textures. Absolutely. It was an enjoyable and memorable day full of great information, food, and company. I had a wonderful time and will certainly take another class if I have the opportunity to return to Paris. Thank you!
Beverlee Loat - Canada, June 2010 : Terresa was most informative and flexible when it came to structuring a class for my friend and me. We learned a lot and had a lovely day with Terresa.
Dana Farver - Texas, June 2010 : Terresa moves through the cobblestone streets like a Parisian – that is to say, she walks fast, and purposefully, she knows where she is going and aims to get there tout suite. Terresa Murphy is an American expat living now in a quiet neighborhood in the 11th arrondissement Paris for nearly 15 years. Yesterday, when she was showing me all the best she knows of what this city has to offer a foodie like me, she always walked ahead, despite my best efforts, waving at one shop that sells “exquisite macaroons,” at another that deals in “the best artisan cheese in Paris.” In and out of the little neighborhood shops we went, tasting, talking, greeting shopkeepers who are passionate about the food they share and who take my interest and Terresa’s enthusiasm as high compliments. She is tall, and as she walked ahead of me, her long hair flew all around her as she fearlessly crossed congested streets and commented on... (continue reading at her travel blog)...
Ray Razavi - Bay Area, May 2010 : I just got back to California. Thank you for the wonderful class ...the farmer's markets, tasty food and wine complements. I have been telling my girlfriend Susan about the class and been inspired to cook. It was the highlight of my Paris visit!
Nikki Halliwell, May 2010 : We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves on Saturday. Thanks for having us!
Laura Rubenstein - San Diego, April 2010 : Terresa is a brilliant chef. She coordinated a savory menu that fit all of our dietary needs. With this hands on class we learned things we could easily replicate at home. We are very grateful for such a rich and delicious experience.
Christina Urquhart - Houston, April 2010 : We had a great experience and most importantly enjoyed you!! The day was very comfortable, relaxing and beyond our expectations!! You made us feel as if we were a part of your family or old friends visiting for the day. Your home became our home and that made it all the more fun. This topped with the excellent food, wines and culinary tour (by the way, my wine & olive oil made it home in one piece!!) made this an unforgetable experience. I will certainly recommend your course to any friends I may know traveling to Paris.
Dan Kirsch - Zurich, Switzerland, March 2010 : It was a wonderful day! The recipes were very interesting (delightful, actually) and the results were exceptional. I never thought I would enjoy eating a radish, but I certainly like them the way you made them. I have them on my list to watch for in the produce markets! I also never thought I would knowingly eat an onion, and yet I did with the big green thing on the plate with the polenta. The food was all very good, and it starts with the recipes. I look forward to having the time over the summer to explore more with vegetables and seeing what I can discover. Thanks again! I will refer people your way if they ask for recommendations in Paris.
Stephanie and Jim Bangert – Bay Area, February 2010 : Your class absolutely fulfilled expectations of a wonderful, warm evening focused on food, cooking, wine and conversation. The best part was listening to the context, the philosophy of why the menu is created the way it is and how the care and preparation was integrated with that philosophy.
Alecia Lott – East Coast, Janury 2010 : Your class was a fabulous gift. It was exactly what I wanted: something very informal and comfortable, not stuffy, yet packed with information and ideas. I'm normally pretty shy but you were very easy to talk to and the class never felt "staged" or as though you were sticking to a schedule. Just hanging out, cooking wonderful food, taking pictures, listening to music, eating--my idea of a great Saturday! :) Thanks again, Terresa.
Katie McKenna - East Coast, December 2009 : The class was exactly what we wanted and we appreciated the flexibility in the menu to omit gluten and make the dessert we requested. We learned a lot and it inspired us to be more experimental in our own cooking. It was fun to visit the marketplace and see some of the different offerings. I wish we lived locally so we could use the new information more often. The class was very hands on and it allowed us to get a feel for the different cooking techniques and ask many questions. The class gave me a new respect for the ingredients that go into food and inspired a new dedication to cooking.
Rachel and Marc - Lausanne, Switzerland, November 2009 : What a fantastic way to spend a weekend in Paris! We whole-heartedly recommend this cooking class to anyone who wants a truly inspiring experience while in Paris. There is no better way to spend a Saturday than selecting fresh and seasonable vegetables from an open air market and then creatively preparing them while enjoying great wine and excellent company. Terresa is an extremely knowledgeable and down-to-earth teacher, extremely patient in showing us what to select and how to prepare it, all in the comfort of her home! She also taught us practical kitchen techniques like sharpening knives and the proper method of cutting that we will use from now on. We can’t wait to try these recipes at home – from the roasted kabocha squash salad with pomegranate seeds to the baby artichokes (which we mentioned off-hand that we had no idea how to prepare and voilà! were added to the menu). We are so looking forward to our next hop from Switzerland to Paris and will definitely take this cooking class again. Thank you for an unforgettable weekend, Terresa!
Alice and Peter - Seattle, October 2009 : Terresa geared each part of our cooking class experience to our level of skill and had a knack for letting us go when we knew what to do but helping us when it was a task new to us. We took away skills and recipes we will use for the rest of our lives! She was extremely helpful and went out of her way to make sure we got recipes by emai, answered our questions and helped us with extras like food equivalent conversions. Plus she's a cool gal, a good conversationalist, and has pretty awesome art.
Torrie Ogilvie - San Diego (by way of Bordeaux) October 2009 : Merci beacoup, le cours a été une des meilleurs parties de ma visite à Paris. I left feeling enormously satisfied, intellectually, creatively and gastronomically. learning basics like a vegetable stock and the more difficult challenges such as the proper way to make a risotto or flip a tarte tatin were equally important and well balanced. i was very pleased with new ideas such as the different use of wine in risotto and the use of bay leaves which are often forgotten.
Dr. S. J. Lodge - London : This article appeared in the June 8, 2009 issue of the Weekly Standard : "...The most fun I had cooking in Paris, however, was with a Franco-American called Theresa Murphy. She runs La Cucina di Terresa, which specialises in vegetarian, organic cuisine. If Meryl Streep had gone in for cooking, this is what her classes would have been like: witty, offbeat, with a variety of accents. We met in the organic market in St Germain and then rode the free bicycles which the mayor of Paris has handily parked at stands throughout the city centre, to Theresa’s tiny apartment near Bastille. There we made eggplant and fig risotto, pepperonata, poppyseed crackers with fresh goat’s cheese and blackberry preserve, and a chestnut flour cake with lemon pepper marmalade. I can still see the deep rose colour of the figs, roasted in wine, when they emerged from the oven. Cicerone, Theresa’s cat, tried to assist in making the crackers; we drank wine and swapped stories of travel, family, and food. We laughed a lot."
Monica Shaw - London : Her article "If You Are a Vegetarian in Paris" appeared in the International Indian magazine, May 2009.
Sam Minkoff - Boston, June 2009 : From the website I was expecting a fresh, organic, healthy experience. Not only that, the website did an excellent job of conveying the warm and ecclectic personality of the host, Terresa, who is truly an amazing individual. She welcomed us into her home with open arms and it felt like we knew each other for years. Definitely! Besides observing and tasting excellent fresh dishes, we were able to take away some vital cooking tips as well. We now know how to dice almost anything in an easy and effective manner! Additionally, we learned that you can make delicious meals while using organic and healthy ingredients. We never would have expected a combination of basil infused oil and almond milk panna cotta with fresh cherries to turn out so delicious! She did an excellent job of finding the appropriate balance between teaching and demonstrating. I never felt like I was doing too much or too little. We took away important cooking skills and perspectives that I am positive we will use for the remainder of our lives. The recipes were probably the best part of the whole experience. I was extremely adventurous in choosing this particular class, but I knew that it would be a special treat for both myself and my girlfriend, whose birthday it was.
Savory does not even begin to describe how the food tasted. Not in a million years would I have expected to enjoy roasted radishes simply seasoned with salt and pepper,but it turned out to be a snack that I could munch on for ages! I look forward to making home-made vegetable broth and exploring the organic and local offerings of my home and my temporary home in London. Additionally, I can't wait to try and grow something fresh out of my window or in my back yard and then taste the fruits of my labor in my own fresh organic cooking! I never thought that a vegetarian meal would taste so delicious and hearty Cooking is only half of the fun with this class. The amazing conversation provided for a well-rounded and meaningful experience that we will both never forget.I could've sat around and talked with Terresa for hours and hours, whether the conversation topic is photography, cooking, politics, or whatever else comes up. And I greatly appreciate her consideration of my budget in preparing this class. Thank you again for being such an amazing person and an incredible host. I really hope that we can do this again some time!
Christina Begley - San Francisco, April 2009 : Your class exceeded my expectations from the website. Absolutely. I can't wait to try the recipes again! Some of the basics (how to hold a knife, when to season with salt, etc.) were especially helpful. The trip to the marketplace was amazing! The cheese stop was particularly gratifying. I really appreciated the explanation of all the different stands/vendors and their products. The asparagus risotto (we made) was one of the best things I've ever eaten. Also, I am know searching desperately for the cute radishes to make the little treats we sampled. As a non-cook, I felt inspired to give cooking another try.
Corie and Gerry Olvaney - New Jersey, March, 2009 : You were very gracious is opening your kitchen and home and shared not only your knowledge of food but your love of Paris with us. As someone who is new to cooking, Corie learned many good techniques, especially how to make pie crust. This is something that everyone coming to Paris should experience. You explained not only the display of the vendors but their produce and other supplies beyond what a casual tourist would see. We came away with learning new skills and perfecting old ones, as simple as how to peel an apple/potato, using a great French peeler. All the recipes were excellent, your choice of ‘Roasted Radishes’ and ‘Honey-roasted Fennel with Goat Cheese’ were new to us and very enjoyable. I have taken several cooking class over time, in professional kitchens, sharing your home and kitchen only added to our enjoyment. Upon returning from our trip, at Corie’s home in New Jersey, we went shopping for ingredients to made ‘Potato Gnocchi’ and ‘Honey-Roasted Fennel’. You gave us a good insight into how to choose the best produce. I did prepare all the recipes we enjoyed with you, this past week for our southern relatives, enjoyed by all.
Chiemi Takasu - Japan, March 2009 : I had an enjoyable time at Terresa's artistic kitchen! First of all, I found her website and was surprised at her artistic photos. Secondly, I took to her artistic kitchen, and cozy living room. So I decided to have her cooking class and baking class. At the cooking class, we made roasted fennel with honey and goat cheese, potato gnocchi, and Tarte Tatin. Every recipe was very simple, but making the most of each ingredient's freshness. Especially, regarding potato gnocchi, as I tried once at my cooking lesson in JAPAN, but completely different ones. Her potato gnocchi dissolved in my mouth! At the baking class, we made macaroons with salt-caramel filling and orange tuilles. Orange tuilles was my favorite! This orange smell gave me asmiley and happy face! It was the first time I had made macaroons, but her careful instructions were very effective for me. I hope to have her enjoyable lessons at the other seasons!
Valerie Robertson - South Carolina, February 2009 : Your class gave me confidence to try things and not be afraid of failure, even experts can mess up but they learn from it and keep going. I tend to give up if a recipe doesn't come out right the first time. I enjoyed the one on one time and felt that I learned more this way than I could have if there were 4 or 5 other students. Truly a great experience! Meeting you really did make it special.
Isabelle Tadmoury - Paris, January 2009 : We had a wonderful time; both the food and the atmosphere were perfect. I'm sure it will remain one of our more memorable nights in Paris! The whole evening was well thought through, from the white starched aprons to the measured ingredients, the food to the wine and cheese, the cooking, the techniques...
Amanda Miller - Australia,November 2008 : Terresa's kitchen is much more than just a place to cook and have a great, down to earth, practical cooking lesson topped off with a delectable meal (which it certainly is) - this is a feast for the senses, a reminder of where our food comes from and why it is wonderful and particularly that by eating locally and seasonally food becomes an unbeatable us that food is indeed the only art form that nourishes but it is an art form that we can and should all access in our everyday lives and that we should never compromise on eating well. This experience was my favourite thing about Paris - i wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone, and certainly think that the magic of the simple fare we created here will remain in my fond memories and influence my food choices long after those of the fancy Parisian bistrots have disappeared.
Ian H - Australia, November 2008 : Being a male and a novice cook I was a little nervous booking in for the class, however, from the moment Terresa met me at the markets I had a fabulous day. I learned a lot about vegetable selection, preparation and technique with implements knives etc. At the same time Terresa is a great host in her own home, was very patient and you could tell she really enjoys sharing her skills with you. Not only was the class educational it was also fun and we spent time talking about wine, foods and their seasons, other countries and current world issues. The class is very good value for the personal attention and is all inclusive of ingredients, excellent wine and apron and printed recipes. As a non-vegetarian it showed me that you don't need meat to make a great meal. It was the highlight of my trip to Paris and highly recommend it.
Chuck Tweedle - San Francisco, June 2008 : Now that Carol and I have dialed back the pace a bit from last week's birthday activities, I want to take a moment and thank you for an absolutely wonderful day on Friday. After our market visit in the 16eme and cook-a-thon that followed at Villa Dancourt, both under your capable guidance, we talked endlessly about how much fun we had and how delicious our lunch was. From the starters of the home made crackers and baked French radishes, to the salad course followed by the delicious main event through wrapping up with our moulded almond milk dessert, every bite was savory and intriguing. My only fear is that I am now destined to be the primary "chopper" for all of our future home prepared meals in San Francisco! More than the enjoyment of the food, however, your enthusiasm, patience and friendly guiding hand made the entire experience extra special and memorable in the best sense of the word. I will enthusiastically recommend a "day with Terresa" to all who are interested in a Parisian "hands on" cooking experience. Please don't hesitate to use me as a reference for potential future clients. Terresa, thanks again for helping to make my wife's birthday celebration in Paris such a memorable and positive experience.
Scott Brannon - Los Angeles, May 2008 : Where Vegetables Abound:
While others were scurrying out of Paris for the Easter weekend “pont” (their word for a 3-day weekend, literally, bridge) my friend and I trekked up to Villa Dancourt in Montmartre on Good Friday afternoon to participate in a cooking class given by Terresa of La Cucina di TerrESa. She offers organic, plant-based cooking classes and tours to Americans vacationing or relocating to Paris. I knew of her passion for fresh vegetables,what each season generously offers, and her affectionate attachment to Italian cuisine, but I was unprepared for the dishes we conjured up under her patient, encouraging instruction. We started off at the Square d’Anvers open-air market where, among other things, she gleaned an unfamiliar vegetable called“puntarella.” Spring chicory from the Latium region of Italy, you might mistake it for dandelion but for the white,greenish tips of its heart. It’s bright bitterness would serve as a light bed for the honey-lemon roasted fennel appetizer we would soon be cooking up to eat with a fresh chevre from the Selles sur Cher region of the Loire Valey, known for it’s sweet, nutty rounds of A.O.C. protected goat’s milk cheese coated in edible ash—which, by the way,we also bought at the market from a jolly man tending his tiny stand and its array of artisan rounds at different stages of ripeness. To set the record straight puntarella is usually served alone as a salad, after trimming the hearts out of its large leafy head, slicing them thin, plunging them into ice water till they curl up, and then tossing them with an anchovy dressing—a favorite dish of the Romans that issues in springtime. But as Terresa demonstrated,it was a harmonious match with the sweetness of the fennel. On the way back to the apartment at Villa Dancourt we stopped in at a new neighborhood wine shop featuring wines from small producers, manyfrom regions further south and west. I even got an enthusiastic lesson on the different soilsof the Languedoc region and the characteristics they impart to its wines from a small producer…there for the occasion. Terresa decided on a Jurançon, Cuvée Marie Sec from Charles Hours and a 100% Carignan from Jérôme Calmes. Then we went backto the apartment and went to work. While I chopped up vegetables for the broth we’d be using for risotto she tossed fresh red and white radishes, leaves and all, with someextra virgin olive oil and roasted them in the oven, then passed them around. An amazing little treat:the radishes were sweet and al dente, the leaves crisp and crunchy like sage leaves when sautéed in butter. She calls them “radis vitrifiés.”After whipping up a crème anglais that we set aside to cool for tiramisu (her recipe’s a variation on Toni Vianello’s tiramisu, the former owner of l’Osteria, with whom she worked in 2002-03) we prepared treviso rosso tardivo, a chicory from the land around the northern Italian city of Treviso(found in markets from December to April) for the risotto we would be making. Finally we assembled her honey-lemon roasted fennel hors d’oeuvre then sat down to begin eating. The Jurançon sec with its mineral earthiness was splendid with the fennel and goat cheese. Now since we were making risotto, and since a true risotto is not a dishone can make in advance and then warm up,we were soon back in the kitchen sautéing onions, watchingthe carnaroli rice turn translucent, adding ladles of broth,eventually the treviso…and then the final step, adding the parmesan and butter, and creaming the risotto (mantecareas they say in Italian) into a delicious al’onda (wavy) consistency. We ate it piping hot with the light, spicy Carignan,which paired beautifully with the slight bitter savorof the treviso. In the meantime, of course, we had assembled the tiramisu, and after a gentle pause we dug inand let it’s velvety texture melt in our mouths. It was a wonderful culinary experience from beginningto endthat clung to my senses all weekend long. And while others scurried back into Paris after the Easter“pont,” we made our way back to the airport en route home to Los Angeles. I know I’ll find a lot of Terresa’s inspiring affinity to and harmonious play with vegetables inhabiting my kitchen, my cooking, and my sensibility from this day forward.
Sophie Devilliers - Paris, April 2008 : I wanted to surprise a friend for his 30th birthday and booked a 3-hour vegetarian cooking class with Terresa What interested me initially was the fact that she used only seasonal vegetables in her dishes, as well as fresh organic produce in all her recipes. The lesson was a real success!! Terresa had created a simple yet gourmet menu especiallyfor the day. For starters we had Blancmange au Petit Pois, followed by an Artichoke Risotto, (made with freshvegetable broth we prepared ourselves) and Castagnaccio with Lemon-Pepper Marmalade for dessert. In her cooking, Terresa uses many herbs, which she often grows herself, as well as different types of organic oils (colza, olive, pumpkin seed, etc.). She experiments a lot with vegetables and the different ways in which they can be cooked, which meant that apart from the many useful tips and techniques that we learned from her, we also discovered one or two vegetable delicacies that Terresa had discovered herself!! The day was an absolute success. The best part was sitting down to the wonderful lunch we had ourselves created!! The dishes were lovely, very fresh and original, but very easy to prepare. I was amazed at the knowledge that Terresa has about cooking, not only about vegetables but also herbs, oils organic produce, vegan menus, fruits, cheeses, wines etc. What struck me was also the passion she demonstrates when cooking. We learned many new things and I know that I will retain them and put them into practice when next I want to cook up a storm.
Susan Stone - Colorado, January 2008 : I am fortunate to know my good friend Terresa thirty years now and to have feasted upon her sumptuous dishes on many an occasion. When she informed me of her new culinary venture, I flew to Paris straightaway to be first in line to take her cooking classes. I must say that Terresa's enormous respect for the bounty of the earth lent an almost sacred aura to the whole ritual of shopping for and preparing meals in her sunny kitchen. Each moment of the process was something to savor. As we strolled through the local organic open-air market, Terresa pointed out what to look for and why she buys her produce from a particular vendor. Whatever looked best on a given day determined the substance of the dishes we prepared, whether it be appetizer, risotto, salad, or dessert. Terresa then thoughtfully suggested accompanying wines, cheeses, and bread from her favorite specialty shops where she has a long standing personal rapport with their proprietors. But Terresa's real genius lies in her ability to highlight the inherent beauty and flavors of individual fruits and vegetables, as if each one were a precious jewel set audaciously yet harmoniously within a crown of many other such jewels. The dishes she prepares are edible studies in color, texture, and composition; moment by moment she creates the palette for each new gastronomic delight. For example, I was happily surprised to see her add roasted brilliant orange squash to salad greens and to garnish gnocchi with lovely fresh sage leaves and a smattering of blueberries. Simply put, as a spiritually conscious culinarian and artist, Terresa will inspire you to create elegant,artful dishes that leave you with a most peaceful sense of well being - dishes that nourish body, mind, heart, and soul!
Jeffrey and Jason Friedman - San Francisco, Dec 2007 : If you're like us, you'll start to wonder, after three or four restaurant meals, why the heaps of gorgeous vegetables you see in the stores and the markets near the apartment don't seem to make their way onto the plate. "The French don't like to pay for vegetables when they go out" was how one French friend explained it to us. Lately, though, this has been changing. More and more restaurants, including many of the ones we recommend in the "Welcome Book"that awaits you in the apartment, are giving vegetables, if not a starring role, then at least an interesting supporting one. In August Le Monde ran a long article about Joël Thiébault, who grows and supplies vegetables to some of the finest restaurants in Paris. He raises around 2,000 kinds of vegetables, including many antique varieties that he single-handedly brought back into cultivation. Think heirloom tomatoes, artichokes, carrots, beets ... it's clear this master gardener is on a mission.Now, in the spirit of Joel Thiébault, we bring you Terresa , an American chef and artist who has made Paris her home since 1996. Terresa's our good friend, so we're biased, but the meals that have emerged from her tiny home kitchen are among the most memorable we've had in Paris. She has a thing for risotto, a knack for vegetable tarts, a way with vegetables that she wants to share with you. She's put together a culinary adventure just for guests of Villa Dancourt that we're proud to offer to you. Starting at 8:30 you'll begin gathering ingredients at an organic open-air market, then return to the neighborhood to hit Terresa's favorite food shops on Rue Lepic and its environs. Then you'll return to the apartment for a master class, a delicious meal, conversation in English or French or both. (Terresa's also the most patient and generous French teacher we've ever had.) Check out Terresa's site at http://www.lacucinaditerresa.com. The link to the Villa Dancourt special is here. Take a cooking class and make your stay in the best food shopping neighborhood in Paris even more memorable.