Last night, I went with some friends Anita, Linda to our Village's Cultural and Civic center to see Award-winning chef-restaurateur, cookbook author, and television personality - Rick Bayless - it was awesome!
The place was hoppin'. We went an hour early for a wine and cheese reception and dined on excellent hors'dourves - especially the Salmon Risotto. This reception was not catered by Rick Bayless, but everything they served was wonderful.
This is Chris (a friend who works with Anita), me, Anita and Linda enjoying the event!
Chef Bayless talking about how he wanted to become a Chef after falling in love with the sights, sounds and flavor of Mexico. His family had restaurants in Oklahoma, where he grew up. He seems very down to earth and humble, relaxed, not like some of the other crazy chefs that you see on TV. There were a few glitches with the sound system but he couldn't have been nicer about it and improvised with a regular mic, the sound system problem did get fixed.
He talked about his Frontera Farmer Foundation which he established in 2003 to attract support for small Midwestern farms. Rick and Deann Bayless, along with the restaurants’ staff, created the Foundation out of their concern for struggling farmers and the importance of local produce to the vitality of Chicago’s culinary culture. It was very interesting to hear where he buys his produce locally.
We waited about an hour to have him sign our books and take a few photos with him, it was well worth it. Then we headed over to The Vine in Grayslake to have a few dessert martini's - I had the Mudslide Martini and it was delicious.
I now have my cookbook proudly displayed on top of my cookbook cabinet and cannot wait to whip up some authentic Mexican cuisine!
Jbien Provecho everyone!