Last Thursday, my friend and colleague Deberah and I once again helped with preparations for the Taste of Home Cooking School. The Times-Herald and Newnan-Coweta Magazine help sponsor the show each year, and it is always a huge hit in our community and the surrounding area. Tables are set up backstage at the Centre for the Performing and Visual Arts in Newnan, and this is what it looks like beginning about 8:30 a.m., so a lot of work is already underway by the time of that 6:30 p.m. show!
The recipe I made this year was Cookie Dough Truffles, and I must say the (egg-free) batter I managed to get a bite of was just delicious! I always use a teaspoon when I make cookies or candies, but I loved using the show's small spring-handled scoop instead. It made uniformly sized balls quite easily, so that's a gadget I do believe I will invest in.
After the truffles were refrigerated for a short while, it was time to dip them in melted chocolate. Michelle Roberts, the culinary specialist who presents the show in Newnan each year, had prepared what she calls a "high tech" gadget for dipping by breaking off the middle two tines of a plastic fork. It made dipping the truffles so easy!
While the chocolate was still wet, I dusted the truffles with pearlized silver sprinkles from Wilton.
Aren't these pretty? The silver sprinkles added such a festive touch, I do believe I will be embellishing my truffles and other candies this year!
Another returning helper for this year's show was sweet Kay from Fayetteville, who is one of the Taste of Home field editors. I got hungry just watching her mix up the ingredients for the French Cranberry-Apple Pie.
And here's her completed pie, decorated with acorns cut from a readymade piecrust. Pretty! (And, I might add, yummy. This prepared pie was given away at the cooking school, but yours truly got to take home the unbaked pie prepared on stage that night and I cooked it as soon as I got home. Delicious!)
After going home for a few hours to rest and change into our uniforms, the four of us helpers came back to get our assignments for the evening. From left are Deberah, our new friends Anna and Leigh from United Bank, and me.
The food prepared at the show is given away as door prizes (including some terrific containers/dishes), and these were some of the other door prizes given away that night.
Here's Michelle getting a soundcheck on stage right before the doors open.
Soon the ladies -- and more than a few gentlemen, I noticed! -- began filling up the auditorium. It was a fun night, and I enjoyed meeting some great new folks this year!
Of course I try to look out for my blog friends, so when I was told I could take an extra set of magazines if I wanted, I grabbed two more for one of you! The Taste of Home Cooking School Brand Name Cookbook at left is the one that features all the recipes made at our cooking school, including the truffles and pie mentioned above. At right is the latest issue of TOH's Simple and Delicious. If you'd like to win these two magazines, just leave a comment to this post before 7 a.m. EST tomorrow. Good luck!