55KRC – Midwest Culinary Institute and Chef Jackson Rouse

55KRC – Midwest Culinary Institute and Chef Jackson Rouse

Somewhere in Glendale, there’s a Smokey Chickpea-Beet Burger calling out to me. It’s been topped with avocado and piquillo pepper, layered on an egg bun, and made with all sorts of local love.

Somewhere in Glendale, there’s a Smokey Chickpea-Beet Burger calling out to me.  It’s been topped with avocado and piquillo pepper, layered on an egg bun, and made with all sorts of local love.  It calls to me from the kitchen of The Iron Horse restaurant where it is just one piece of a menu designed to showcase spectacularly the bounty of our region and season.  And while I haven’t yet gotten the chance to gobble it up, I have had the opportunity to meet its creator.  All three of us did, in fact, when we hosted him, Chef Jackson Rouse, and the lovely and talented Amy Hunter of The Midwest Culinary Institute (MCI) at our 55KRC radio show What’s Hot with Molly, Kelly, and Caitlin

It was just last Sunday when we gathered in studio to dish on all the offerings of the Kroger Creations Cooking Classes at MCI.  Amy came prepared to gush about the really wonderful chefs – from inside the teaching kitchens of MCI, and from the fabulous restaurants all around the city – she’s lined up to teach the rest of us home-cookin’ foodies everything from knife skills to Mediterranean classics to soups and stocks perfect for the chilly months ahead.  She even filled us in on a pie-making class taught by Karen Crawford, the pastry chef of Jean-Robert’s table, just before Thanksgiving during which you, the student, craft the ultimate pumpkin, apple, and pecan pies to serve on the actual day of thanks. 

Then, Jackson chimed in with the menu he’s crafted to teach on Monday, November 1st.  You’ll have to listen to the podcast for the complete menu, but let’s just say there’s no way you’ll leave hungry.  And, based on the exchange we shared in just one hour of radio, I also can say confidently that you will leave inspired to take on your own kitchen in a whole new way.  Jackson is gracious and engaging and never once made us (read: me) feel silly about all our (my) pedestrian questions.  In fact, he answered them as if he himself had been wondering how to, say, cook a rabbit. 

Besides the class menu that’s in the hopper, you’ve just got to listen into the podcast for Jackson’s thoughts on good vs. evil (hint: pork’s involved with both), his answer to a craving for a warm salad (pork makes an appearance here too), his crispy take on salmon, and his charming tale of courting his wife.  When it wraps, mosey on over to midwestculinary.net to make sure you are sitting front and center for his class on the first of November.


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