As I stepped into the kitchen of Le Cordon Bleu Chicago, I must admit that I had a little “Julia Child” moment. I had never been inside such a prestigious place steeped with the richness of culinary history. My heart raced with the anticipation of actually having the opportunity to cook with Master Chef finalist Chef Suzy Singh.

Dave from NOW Foods introduces Chef Suzy Singh

Dave from NOW Foods introduces Chef Suzy Singh

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Chef Suzy and me!

The event was hosted by NOW Foods to showcase the organic and gluten free product line – which, by the way, is delicious. Standing around a long stainless steel table with other bloggers, I watched Chef Suzy’s demo of how to prepare the sugarless sugar chocolate cupcakes. What a delight and a relief that Cordon Bleu students helped each of us with the actual preparation. The mixer equipment was huge and a bit intimidating. It reminded me of an upside down bonnet hood salon hair dryer.

Chef Rob and me!

Chef Rob and me!

Chef Rob guided me as I poured everything into the mixer. The whirs and aroma of cocoa powder clouds blending with coconut oil soothed away my anxiety. A great tip from Chef Suzy is to coat your scoop or spoon with cooking spray so your batter won’t stick.  Here is a photo of one of my cupcakes!  I even iced it and sprinkled pink pearls on it.

My Cordon Bleu cupcake!

My Cordon Bleu cupcake!

The next culinary assignment was to prepare Touchdown Burgers, i.e. gluten-free, allergen-friendly, veggie burgers.  We mixed NOW Foods certified organic Quinoa whole grain and organic white rice flour as the base. To form flax paste, we mixed 2 Tablespoons of organic golden flax seed meal with 3 Tablespoons of water. An assortment of spices, peppers, Kalamata olives, spinach, and Basil gave the burger an additional kick. And the head Cordon Bleu Chef even curried eggplant as a condiment.

Mis en place for touchdown burgers

Mis en place for touchdown burgers

This amazing experience at Le Cordon Bleu is one that I will always remember! What a delight and honor to cook with Chef Suzy Singh! What are your favorite cooking tips?

Savor the day!.

28 Comments

  1. Lynn Janes on February 10, 2014 at 9:37 am

    Thanks for the opportunity! My dd (10) has been gluten free since she turned 1 and although it’s gotten easier to find foods it is still tough sometimes to find “good” foods.

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 10, 2014 at 4:20 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Lynn! That’s amazing that your dd has been gluten free since she turned 1

  2. Ann Hanson on February 10, 2014 at 10:42 am

    I am looking forward to your chats.

  3. Sarah Crow on February 10, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    My Neighbor’s Son Is Gluten- And Dairy-Free, So I’m Trying To Learn More So I Can Keep Inviting Them Over For Meals!

  4. Eva on February 10, 2014 at 6:32 pm

    I too am trying to learn about glutton free cooking..

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 11, 2014 at 7:14 am

      Hi, Eva. I am so glad you joined me in my kitchen! I am recording a Kitchen Chat podcast with Chef Suzy tomorrow and it will post Feb 24th. She has some great gluten free cooking ideas. I will share her recipes soon, too!

  5. Jamie Brown on February 10, 2014 at 7:08 pm

    I love your blog, very fun!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 11, 2014 at 7:13 am

      Thank you so much, Jamie!!! I hope you will join me in my kitchen as I actually learn how to cook.

  6. Rebecca on February 11, 2014 at 1:25 am

    Dawn (Because I said so) sent me over to your blog. I’d love to find something yummy and good for my family. Thanks!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 11, 2014 at 7:07 am

      Hi, Rebecca. Welcome to my kitchen! I am going to start posting some yummy recipes very soon. I hope you will come back soon! And I absolutely adore Dawn!

  7. Pattij on February 11, 2014 at 5:49 am

    My 5 year old grandson was recently diagnosed with a wheat and soy allergy and I am always looking for recipes that actually taste good!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 11, 2014 at 7:05 am

      Hi, Patti. Later today I will post some great recipes! And I will ask Chef Suzy about wheat and soy allergy recipes, too. Welcome to my kitchen!

  8. Raynore Jones on February 11, 2014 at 7:53 am

    Hi Patti. Found out about you from Dawn. What can you recommend for a diabetic Valentine?

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 11, 2014 at 11:35 am

      Hi, Raynore! Welcome to my kitchen! I’m so glad Patti and Dawn invited you to join me. I have a fun and easy idea for you for a delicious, diabetic dessert. A beautiful array of berries, emphasizing the red, i.e. strawberries, raspberries… And then top it with fresh whipped cream. Here’s how you whip the cream- I actually did this for the first time ever in December. Take a cup of cream and beat it with hand mixer until it makes soft peaks. Spoon on top of the berries and serve. It will look really cute served in a simple glass dish. I will try to upload a photo I took in December. Although I am not a doctor, I have heard that full fat is better than fat free for a diabetic diet assuming there are no cholesterol issues. But please check with your own doctor.

  9. The Mommy on February 11, 2014 at 10:03 am

    OK – My one and only kitchen tip/shortcut: When I make anything requiring cubed potatoes, I use a French fry cutter and then make the cubes out of those. Saves me a lot of time. This is a nice site – I’m anxious to listen to some of your podcasts!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 11, 2014 at 11:38 am

      Thanks for that wonderful kitchen tip, The Mommy! I am so delighted you are visiting my kitchen. I would love for you to listen to my podcasts! Just go to the homepage of kitchenchat.info and click on the podcast button. Lots of fun chefs and guests share their culinary insight and practical advice with us. Savor the day!

  10. Steff Woell on February 12, 2014 at 8:17 pm

    Margaret-

    I need to pay more attention to what you are up to these days! How much fun did you have?? My mom always told me to clean up as I go so the mess wouldn’t be overwhelming at the end. I think that is my favorite tip. You look so happy in all the pictures! Healthy is fun!! Take care!!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 17, 2014 at 10:21 am

      Thanks, Steff! Thanks for visiting me in my online kitchen!! So excited that you are joining me for my culinary journey! I am grateful that my cancer is behind me so I can now savor each day.

  11. JoDee Kelly on February 13, 2014 at 10:30 am

    What a great blog. Some good kitchen advice don’t be afraid to try something different or new…the worst that can happen is it doesn’t turn out as good as it sounded.

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 17, 2014 at 10:20 am

      Thanks, JoDee! And you have some great advice about realizing that the worst that can happen is that it doesn’t turn out great! And then we just have frozen pizza on standby.

  12. Sandy on February 14, 2014 at 6:58 am

    So nice to have a blog like yours for my daily reading!! thanks!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 17, 2014 at 10:19 am

      Thanks, Sandy! I hope you continue to visit with me in my kitchen! Later today I will be posting about a culinary adventure at an Ethiopian restaurant.

  13. Andrea C. on February 14, 2014 at 8:32 am

    I think my favorite cooking tip comes from Julia Child–be fearless! Whenever I look at a recipe and think it’s too difficult, it makes me want to try it even more. They don’t always turn out as I hope, but I’m always glad I tried and I almost always learn from the attempt!

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 17, 2014 at 10:17 am

      Andrea, you are absolutely right! And that’s what I am trying to do these days in the kitchen: Be fearless! Even when the fire alarm goes off because of my “smoking” salmon. Julia Child was such an inspiration!

  14. Sarah on February 16, 2014 at 3:35 am

    Love to eat…..do not love to cook…….or clean up afterward. Perhaps it’s years of pouring my love into the dishes I offer up to my brood only to be met with a chorus of “ewwww mom! You know I don’t like (fill in the blank) ” that has soured me on the whole experience. Or perhaps it is the endlessness of it. With 4 kids I feel that I never leave the kitchen. Their childhood memories of me will be standing in the kitchen plating the latest concoction and saying, ” oh yes you are going to eat it!”. My idea of heaven is a personal chef.

    • Margaret McSweeney on February 17, 2014 at 10:16 am

      Bless your heart! Do you have any close friends that LOVE to cook? Maybe for a day she could cook and in exchange you could do something for her that you do well. I understand completely how meals can be a stressful time. Would the kids like to help plan the menu and help you cook, too?

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