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Cooking Classes in Gulf Shores

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Long walks on beautiful white sand, volleyball and other outdoor games, restaurants and night life, miniature golf and amusement parks . . . and a class? Taking a class when you come to the Gulf Shores area may not be top-of-mind, but widening your horizons may provide a welcome new vacation experience.

cooking class, Faulkner State Community College, Gulf Shores, Alabama, sushi, Cajun, cheesecake

Cooking is more fun when you know how! Choose from a variety of Gulf Coast Culinary Institute workshops to enhance your skills and bring out your hidden chef.

The Gulf Coast Culinary Institute at the Gulf Shores campus of Faulkner State Community College is offering a tasty array of afternoon and evening workshops through early December. Each class lasts 2.5 or 4 hours, and includes information, demonstration and guided hands-on opportunities.

To whet your appetite for the classes, take note of what the Culinary Institute has in store for you in November and December:

Saturday, November 12, 3–7 p.m. ($45)—Holiday Cajun Style
Who says your holiday meal has to be the same each year? Adopt a full Cajun theme or simply incorporate a few Cajun ideas to spice things up. This class discusses the history, the foods and the cooking techniques of Cajun cuisine. After a little exploration, you’ll get to put your new knowledge to use in the kitchen as Chef Trawick guides you through the steps.

Saturday, November 19, 3–5:30 p.m. ($45)—Sushi
Sushi lovers often declare that they would dine on this delicacy more often if not for the cost. But knowing how to make it means you can serve it often for a much lower cost than dining out. Chef Douglas will describe the history, food and techniques of sushi-making. Once you enter the kitchen, you’ll be instructed on selecting ingredients and cooking the rice, then experience the ease of making large rolls, small rolls, inside-out rolls and hand rolls.

Saturday, December 3, 3–7 p.m. ($30)—Cheesecake
Place a homemade cheesecake on the dessert table, and you’re the star of the gathering. You won’t need to watch someone else take those honors at your next get-together once Chef Douglas teaches you the secrets of successful cheesecake creation. Ingredients, tools and techniques will be covered, followed by guided preparation of a variety of savory and sweet treats. Among the lessons are crusts, styles, garnishes and sauces.

Register for any or all of the classes, held at the Faulkner State Community College campus just north of the Intracoastal Canal bridge in Gulf Shores, by calling 251-990-0445 or 800-231-3752.

Culinary workshops are even more fun when couples, families or friends share the experience, so get everyone together and come on down to the beach! If you haven’t already made your lodging arrangements, take a look at some of Meyer Vacation Rentals’ properties, such as 2-bedroom Gulf Shores condos and houses—or for larger groups, 4-bedroom houses and condos in Gulf Shores might be the perfect fit.

Stay informed of Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Vacation Rentals on Facebook and Twitter.

Oyster Cook-Off at the Beach

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

The event may not officially begin until 11:00 a.m. this Saturday, November 5, but you can bet the planning for the 4thAnnual Oyster Cook-off has kicked into high gear over the past few weeks.

4th Annual Oyster Cook-off, The Hangout, Gulf Shores, Alabama, 2011

Cheer on your favorite restaurant in the Oyster Cook-off. November 5, 2011, The Hangout, Gulf Shores, Alabama.

With $10,000 in prizes—including cash and Hangout Music Fest tickets—the competition is fierce. The most coveted prize, though, is bragging rights as creator of the best oyster dish in our island area. Food categories include Cajun Oysters, Oysters Rockefeller, and Create-Your-Own Raw Oysters; they will be judged by an official panel. An overall grand champion also will be named, a fast-paced contest will crown the three speediest shuckers, a best booth will be chosen, and everyone attending will get to vote for the People’s Choice winner.

Tents are already being set up for each competitor, the beer garden is about to be stocked full of craft beers and all the makings for Cordina frozen cocktails, and folks are abuzz with a rivalry befitting the weekend’s sports events.

Will your favorite oyster eatery be competing? Come cheer them on (admission is free!), and sample their savory concoctions for just $1 per ticket:
City Grill
Cotton’s
DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen
Flora-Bama
Gulf Island Grill
The Hangout
Happy Harbor
Lester’s (2010 Cajun winner and Grand Champion)
LL’s Seafood (2010 Raw winner)
Mudbugs
The Original Oyster House
Shrimp Basket (2010 Rockefeller winner)
Steve’s Place
Sunset Cork Room
Sysco
West Beach Grille
Wintzell’s Oyster House
Wolf Bay Lodge

There will be plenty of cook-off activities to keep you engaged, but if you are looking for even more from this gathering, you’ll find it! Live music will be provided by The Rentmakers, and the big screen will broadcast SEC football (be sure to join in the related games and prize opportunities). You can always count on The Hangout for a great variety of high-energy fun for all ages.

Take a peek at video from last year’s Oyster Cook-off.

Stay informed of Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Vacation Rentals on Facebook and Twitter.

Gulf Coast Culinary Institute Cooking Classes

Friday, October 7th, 2011

As you plan your trip to the Gulf Shores area, you probably think about white sand and beach towels, volleyball and other outdoor games, restaurants and night life, miniature golf and amusement parks. Taking a class may not be top-of-mind, but widening your horizons may provide a welcome new vacation experience.

chef, cooking class, culinary institute, gulf shores, alabama, faulkner state

Cooking is more fun when you know how! Choose from a variety of Gulf Coast Culinary Institute workshops to enhance your skills and bring out your hidden chef.

The Gulf Coast Culinary Institute at the Gulf Shores campus of Faulkner State Community College is offering a tasty array of afternoon and evening workshops through early December. Each class lasts 2.5, 3 or 4 hours, and includes information, demonstration and hands-on opportunities.

To whet your appetite for the classes, take note of what the Culinary Institute has in store for you in October:

Saturday, October 8, 3–6 p.m. ($30)—Healthy Cooking
Foods with lower amounts of fat and calories and higher fiber and vitamins are important to any healthy diet. You’ll learn which foods to emphasize, as well as which tools and techniques will help you get the most out of those foods. Learn to make soups, appetizers, entrees and desserts that will satisfy and nourish.

Friday, October 14, 6–8:30 p.m. ($40)—Taste of Italy
You may be surprised at the versatility of classic Italian cuisine and the ease of preparation, in spite of the seemingly complicated names. Chef Marsha breaks it down into easy-to-understand skills to make dishes such as Roasted Garlic & Mascarpone Fettuccine Alfredo; Butternut Squash Risotto with Shaved Pecorino and Granny Smith Apple “Caviar”; Creamy Polenta with Italian Sausage, Peppers, Onions and Homemade Marinara; and Tiramisu Parfaits.

Friday, October 21, 6–8:30 p.m. ($45)—Tapas and Paella
Small-plate tapas of Spain are rising in popularity in the U.S. Learn to make Classic Chilled Tomato Gazpacho; Tortilla Española with Potatoes, Onions and Lemon-Herb Crème Fraiche; Queso Frito (Baked Manchego Cheese with Spicy Spanish Marinara); and Traditional Paella Valenciana with Saffron Rice, Chicken, and Chorizo. Chef Marsha also will share her recommendations for Spanish wines, port and sherry.

Saturday, October 22, 3–6 p.m. ($45)—BBQ Sauces
BBQ is a staple of Southern cuisine. Many a fierce rivalry has begun over bragging rights to the best barbecue! Thanks to this class, you, too, can jump right in to claim your fame as the new champion of flavor. Learn about the history of BBQ in America, as well as regional variations, and then put the information to immediate use with hands-on fun exploring the many combinations.

Saturday, October 29, 3–6 p.m. ($40)—Poultry
From the most basic preparations to complicated gourmet presentations, poultry is a favored choice for entrees, appetizers, soups and more. Learn not only the best cooking techniques, but also how to choose and properly prepare poultry for whichever cooking mode strikes your fancy.

Register for any or all of the classes, held at the Faulkner State Community College campus just north of the Intracoastal Canal bridge in Gulf Shores, by calling 251-990-0445 or 800-231-3752.

Culinary workshops are even more fun when couples, families or friends share the experience, so get everyone together and come on down to the beach! If you haven’t already made your lodging arrangements, take a look at some of Meyer Vacation Rentals’ properties, such as 2-bedroom Gulf Shores condos and houses—or for larger groups, 4-bedroom houses and condos in Gulf Shores might be the perfect fit.

Stay informed of Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Vacation Rentals on Facebook and Twitter.

Deen Brothers Book Signing

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Paula Deen’s son Bobby is ready to share some Deen family cooking secrets Friday, June 17, right here in Gulf Shores, Alabama!

Deen Bros Get Fire Up cookbook signing LuLu's Gulf Shores, Alabama

Cooking demonstration, signed cookbooks and more with Bobby Deen at LuLu's in Gulf Shores on Friday, June 17.

Brothers Jamie and Bobby have published a new cookbook that focuses on the great American pastime of grilling. Titled The Deen Bros. Get Fired Up: Grilling, Tailgating, Picnicking, and More, this cookbook includes much more than “just” delectable Southern recipes. A bit of family interaction, pictures of many of the dishes, and tips on adjusting from stove to grill are a few of the extras included between the book’s covers.

Bobby will appear at LuLu’s at Homeport Marina from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m., signing cookbooks, sharing stories, and showing his skills via live demonstration. The event is free, but if you choose to purchase two copies of Get Fired Up, you will also receive a free copy of Recipes from the Road.

Stay informed of Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Real Estate Vacation Rentals on TwitterFacebook and MySpace.

BBQ and Blues Cookoff

Friday, March 18th, 2011
Foley BBQ Blues 2011 Chamber fundraiser

Delicious BBQ, blues bands, kids activities, silent auction, prize drawings...all this and more Saturday, March 19, in Foley, Alabama!

If you are in the South (even if just passing through), you simply must immerse yourself in two of the best things about the region: BBQ and the blues. It’s easier than you think—just attend the 3rd Annual Foley BBQ and Blues Cookoff!

Saturday, March 19, 2011, will be jammed full of dripping, lip-smacking, wonderful versions of barbecue recipes brought to life. Cookoff entries include more than fifteen backyard hobbyists and veteran chefs, but the dishes will all be so incredibly tasty that it won’t matter which is which. But heed this warning: The BBQ may not last throughout the entire day, so get there early enough to ensure your tastebuds get what they are craving!

The perfect musical complement to BBQ is good ol’ Southern blues. You’ll likely be disappointed to hear a group’s musical segment come to a close, but very soon, another group will pick up and pull you in again. Plan now to catch each of these outstanding performances:

10–noon      Mud Bucket

Noon–2       Soul Monkey

2–4              Mark Kaul and the GC BarStars

4–6              Johnny No

Other aspects of the day include children’s activities, a silent auction, and drawings that allow all ticket holders an opportunity to win terrific prizes such as vacations, diamond jewelry, gift cards and more.

This gated, ticketed event is just $10 (ages 10 and under are free). Your support enables the South Baldwin Chamber Foundation to continue and expand the many educational programs they offer throughout the community.

We hope to see you at Foley’s Heritage Park (Hwys. 98 & 59) between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 19. BBQ for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks, plus some of the South’s best music, plus amusements for the kids, too—and on what is expected to be a perfect-weather day. What more could you ask for?

For more details, call 251-943-5550 or click on South Baldwin Chamber Foundation.

Stay informed of local activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Real Estate on TwitterFacebook and MySpace.

January Culinary Presentations

Thursday, January 13th, 2011

An edible journey around the world is possible right here in Orange Beach when you attend the culinary presentations at Café CITE, part of the Beach CITE Studios in SanRoc Cay. Each Tuesday through March 15 will highlight meals from different countries and regions.

beach cite cafe cite orange beach alabama gulf shores sanroc cay culinary

Learn to spruce up your meal presentations as chefs from Cosmo's and Cobalt share their secrets Tuesday afternoons through March 15, 2011.

Chefs from Cosmo’s and Cobalt—very popular restaurants on the island, known for their mouth-watering presentations of deliciously unique menu items—are looking forward to sharing their recipes and their tips to create beautiful plates and bowls of delicious foods.

January 18 will feature cuisine of the West Coast, while January 25 will highlight specialties of French fare. Both include a sampling of the menu items with wine or coffee. The 2-hour presentations begin at 4:00 p.m., and at a cost of only $20 each, it’s easy to attend both. Just call 251-981-1989 to make your reservations.

Visit the Beach CITE Studios Events page to learn more about these and other classes and concerts available throughout the year.

Stay informed of local activities, vacation rental specials and more by subscribing to this Discover Alabama Beaches blog and Meyer Muse, and by following Meyer Real Estate on Twitter, Facebook and MySpace.

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