Last night was Cooking Night. I stocked my freezer with Chicken Marsala, Herb Crusted Flank Steak and Chilean Pork Loin with Cilantro Sauce for starters. Am I a master chef? Hardly. I can barely boil water. This is all thanks to Village Table.
There are two Village Table locations in Houston. One in West University and one in the Kirkwood/Memorial area. Here is how it works. You go to their website and sign up for a location and a time and then you choose items for your menu. The menu changes each month and they have many offerings for many different tastes.
The night of your session you go to the Village Table location, with a cooler or basket to take all of your creations home. There are different stations around the room for assembling the meals. At each station is step by step instructions and all the ingredients you need to assemble the meal. Most meals will end up in either a gallon freezer bag or a baking dish. Once you have assembled a meal, you put the cooking instruction sticker on it and place it in the refrigerator. Then head to your next station and assemble the next dish on your list.
The thing I like about Village Table is that everything is there for you. They have all the ingredients and have chopped, sliced, diced and even cooked ingredients, if need be. They also have every spice you need for your dish. I am a non-cook. I hate looking at recipes and seeing a long list of 1/4 tsp of this spice and 1/2 tbsp of that spice. I don’t want to buy all of that stuff just for one dish. Village Table buys all of those spices in bulk and has everything you need, right there above your station.
And of course there is the village in Village Table. There is enough counter space for 2 people in each area and even I, who tends to be very shy and quiet, found myself talking to these complete strangers. Some conversations were about cooking, or preparing the dishes or past cooking experiences. I imagine “people people” (you know what I mean) will absolutely love mingling and meeting new faces and sharing new stories.
Now it is a little pricey. 12 meals which serve 4 is $200. 6 meals is $115. But if you sit down and figure out how much it costs per meal it isn’t that bad considering that you will not need to go to the grocery store and buy everything individually. It is all sitting in your freezer ready to go. As for me, no more trips for a while to the fast food joint. And that is always a good thing. Tonight: Beef Stew.