Culinary Demonstration – Cat Cora – Epcot International Food & Wine Festival 2012

Cat Cora, Kouzzina(r) by Cat Cora, Disney’s BoardWalk Inn

October 2, 2012

Wine: Brampton UnWooded Chardonnay

Alistair Glen, DCG, Western Cape, South Africa

This wine comes from one of a number of vineyards that the company has and is a “fabulous food wine because it’s unwooded.” The current vintage in the US is 2011, although they’ve begun to drink the 2012 in South Africa. This wine has a lovely fruit and richness without the wood. Contrary to usual recommendations: add a couple of ice cubes if you want. Nora says… can smell the citrus and the fruit, it’s slightly fizzy, and not overpowering.

Brampton UnWooded Chardonnay

This time, we’ll talk about the presentation/demonstration before the menu and the food…

We aren’t really Cat Cora fans, not because we dislike her, simply that we haven’t seen her on television or read her cookbooks or etc… However, we are fans of Kouzzina at BoardWalk Inn – we’ve been pleased with the food and the service there, our only complaint is that it is L-O-U-D in there when the place is busy.

It seemed to us that Cat Cora spent a lot of time “selling” her celebrity (first and only female Iron Chef, first female in the Culinary Hall of Fame, her olive oil, her charities, her television appearances, her books) –

  • she spent an inordinate amount of time on herself,
  • she didn’t do a cooking demonstration (Dee Foundoukis developed the recipe and did the cooking demo; Dee wasn’t miked,┬áso she couldn’t really talk about the recipe or the food either or answer questions that Cat Cora couldn’t answer (like what kind of greens were on top of the shrimp))
We know our impressions are influenced by the previous presenter, Kevin Dundon. He is really into the food, he does an excellent job of actually cooking and educating. After that, Cat Cora’s presentation just seemed flat and not food focused; perhaps some of the blame lies with Disney World –
  • they could have added Dee to the title (afterall, she’s getting her own following on the Disney Foodie internet), that would have been more accurate and truthful
  • the host seemed particularly fascinated by her accomplishments (and they are outstanding accomplishments), perhaps he directed the focus of the presentation
Cat Cora’s food and the food that her team of chefs create is GOOD, we enjoy eating it, we appreciate that they bring something different to the WDW table. We simply weren’t impressed with the demonstration.

Menu

Seared Shrimp with Spiced Hummus and Peppedew Relish

Seared Shrimp with Spiced Hummus and Peppedew Relish

Recipes

Hummus:

  • 18 oz Garbanzo beans
  • 1 tsp fresh garlic, minced
  • 1 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 2 oz extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • pinch crushed red pepper
  • pinch cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Toast cumin and coriander in a dry pan just until you can smell the spices
  2. Blend the garbanzo beans, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice to desired consistency
  3. Add spices and mix well until smooth
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste
Peppedew Relish:
  • 6 oz peppedew peppers, julienne (these come as “sweet” and as “hot”, jarred peppers, suggests using a blend of the two to suit your palate)
  • 1 oz red onion, julienne
  • 1 oz white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley, minced
  • 1.5 oz extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Mix all ingredients until combined
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste
Pan Seared Shrimp:
  • 18 shrimp, 16-20 count size
  • 1 oz olive oil
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Season shrimp with salt and pepper
  2. Heat oil in pan on medium heat, cook shrimp for 90 seconds on each side
  3. Add red pepper flakes and paprika, mix everything together and finish cooking the shrimp

 

The other plate…

Our Final Notes:

  • This recipe is served at Kouzzina and is quite tasty, nora would order it for herself “yummy! very good!”
  • The shrimp we were served were spotty, nora’s wasn’t TOO overcooked and nick’s was like an eraser (BTW Cat Cora did explain how to know when shrimp is cooked just right; we also understand that in a “convention style food delivery” situation, it’s really hard to get the shrimp right)
  • The hummus and sauce were spicy, nice bit of heat, not too much for the tender mouths though

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