“This is the importance of gathering: it inspires us, delightfully, to be more hopeful, more joyful, more thoughtful: in a word, alive.” – Alice Waters
Gatherhaus first met Yia Vang at Crowded House, when we interviewed him a few months back. More than being taken in by the quality and flavor of the food he prepared, I was mesmerized with his knowledge and cooking technique in his approach to cooking food. He values knowledge over recipes, and embraces the freedom to explore, create, start from scratch, mess it up and try again. His philosophy of technique over recipes mirrors our philosophy of Foundation cooking.
With our participants ranging from in-depth experience in the kitchen to self proclaimed novices when it comes to cooking, Yia encouraged all of us that the best way to learn and understand food is to pay attention when we eat. We eat first with our eyes and our nose, so savor the smells, the color of the food. Take slow bites and enjoy the flavors in your mouth. What do you see? What do you smell? What do you taste? These questions and observations will help you understand the food you eat, but never miss the question, “What do I like?”
You are the perfect guide to discovering your personal flavor profile. We each have a unique interest in flavor combinations, so only you can guide yourself to a meal you will not only enjoy eating, but preparing for others. Being an inquisitive eater, will ultimately make you a better cook.
Each of us were armed with glasses full of our choice beverage as we stood around the counter soaking in Yia’s show of chopping and slicing and sauteing before us. He imparted not only wisdom surrounding food, but his main purpose was to give us permission to love what we eat and granted us the freedom to explore flavors. For me it was the greatest gift of the evening.
With Yia guiding the helm, the first participants of the culinary series feasted on a menu of:
Roasted Cauliflower with Masala Coconut Curry & Crispy Garlic
Shrimp and Grits
Smokey Carrots and Parsnips with Lemon Garlic Yogurt
Cassoulet Beans with fried Duck Eggs and Truffle Oil
“Whenever possible, never eat alone. Meals should always be shared.” – Yia Vang.
And he’s right. Strangers became friends that night. Old memories shared and new ones made while we sat around the table sharing our lives with each other. Our laughter was the soundtrack with the aroma carrying us from beginning to end. It felt as if this was the way that every meal should be consumed. Learning together, sharing together, eating together.
When dinner was over, we feasted on a brand new treat to hit the streets of Minneapolis. The Cookie Cups company provided us with DELISH cookies that we all agreed we can’t wait to buy once they hit stores. It was such a delight to be treated to a new dessert that isn’t even in stores yet!
Gatherhaus, along with Yia from Meet at the Table were honored to create such a magical evening. One that we hope to recreate again in the future.
If you are interested in having Gatherhaus host a party for you, contact Kat and Dani!
Want to know more about Yia’s cooking adventures? You can reach him at meetatthetable.com.
Curious about The Cookie cups? You should be! Make sure to check them out too!
Gatherhaus is the enchanting reality of bringing these rare and beautiful pieces together.
People, places, art, and food that inspire us and make us chase after dreams
of deep, rich community and fulfillment.