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A couple of weeks back I read an article in the paper advertising a Turkish Cooking class to be held at Rave one Saturday afternoon.

What grabbed my attention was the photo of two ladies, and the vibrant colour surrounding them. ORANGE! A colour I am often associated with and one I distinctly disliked as a child. After reading the article, I decided to do something I haven’t done in the last 20years or so, attend a cooking class!

Now, I do not get a lot of time to potter about in the kitchen creating things. Any spare time I do have is generally used up on my bike, out in the elements, cruising around the tracks, reinventing my childhood!

But I do have a shelf full of cookbooks from exotic places, mostly unused, but bought with the dream of those herbs and spices wofting around the room. Up until now, to experience the journey of taste, I have either visited the country, or a wonderful local restaurant doing a great job of recreating the experience of that country.

So, Saturday, I rock along to Rave, on a gray, rather cool, dreary afternoon, to have a sense explosion, and to dream a little of foreign shores and to do some mind travel for the afternoon. Not difficult for someone who travels every day from my desk!

Monica and Sabine had set the room up as a Turkish home. We learned all the tricks on getting those ingredients to look and taste like the pictures in the recipe, ending up sampling our creations and discussing the outcomes with 20 other aspiring foodies.

A most pleasant way to spend an afternoon. Knowing I had invited friends for dinner, I rushed off to the supermarket to buy all my Turkish ingredients...no! I bought a roast of lamb and heard my mother say-“ In a rush-cook a roast. Easiest thing to do!”

Exotic tastes are a big part of our travel dreams. Until we can get there, we can live the dream in Rotorua by visiting Vetro,on Amohau Street, for all your Mediterranean food and other foreign ingredients. And we can register for Monica and Sabine’s next class, Vietnamese. Email theorangetable@hotmail.co.nz and come travelling with me.

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