Free to Feed Cooking Class: Iraqi Food

As you might realise from my blog, I eat out A LOT. There is the odd occasion that I do enjoy jumping into the kitchen to give it my best shot and try something new. I had the pleasure of taking part in cooking class from a not-for-profit social enterprise called Free to Feed where I got to learn how to make Iraqi food. Read on to see how I went in my "fail whale" attempt to cook!

First...a bit about Free to Feed - as mentioned its a social enterprise that works as a mobile cooking school hosting classes, workshops, community events and immersive experiences across Melbourne. I took part as a part of a corporate activity but what better way to get a bunch of friends together to learn a new cuisine?! The team at Free to Feed works with newly arrived refugees with a food or teaching background and helps them get on their feet by involving them as instructors in classes. What a great way to learn a new cuisine and help someone out! But on to the food....was it any good?

My team and I had the wonderful Rawan teaching us how to cook Iraqi food - a country that she had only left a little over a year ago for a better life here in Australia. It was great to get interactive with the food and test out my dulled down chopping skills and smell the spices that I'm oh so not familiar with. We made A LOT of dishes (see the photos below) but the highlights were definitely the handmade lamb dumplings (made by yours truly) and these custard cigar things (team effort but again....yours truly had a hand in it). The cuisine was packed full of spices and so much depth in flavour. If you know me you know I HATE veggies - but damn these were good salads. Layer upon layer on each dish created so much complexity I can't even remotely describe its uniqueness in texture, taste and smell. Heaven....and I got to help make it with a very very large helping hand by Rawan.

One of the best experience I've had in the kitchen where I got to get to know new people, learn a bit about a culture and cuisine that I knew nothing about before, and I got to eat shit loads of food. Seriously....get on to this with your friends, your work colleagues or even your family - it won't disappoint!

Thanks so much to the team at Free to Feed for running the class I took a part in and for being such a worthwhile cause to support!