This post is not sponsored by Sprouts Farmers Market, but we did receive a complimentary Cooking Class and meal while at the event. All opinions are 100% our own.
I love an excuse to get out of the house and enjoy an evening with friends, but lately the excuses have become a little repetitive. At least twice a month, I’ll turn to my husband and mention a group of us are going out, and his response…“Let me guess…Out to eat?”
Dinner and drinks always seems to be our “go to.” We mix up the restaurants near by, but lately I’ve been secretly looking for a fun way to break out of the restaurant, dinner routine.
Last Tuesday, Sprouts Farmers Market invited a group of Dallas Moms Blog contributors and a few other local foodies to a private event at the new TRE Cooking Concepts. Just like me, Sprouts was looking for an excuse to get us all together. Instead of a usual Media Event where they invite us to a tour and tasting, Sprouts broke free of the routine and turned a night out into a whole new experience.
If you’re a born-and-raised Dallasite or have been in the area awhile, you might recognize the name Chef Tre Wilcox. While he began is love of cooking in a fast food kitchen, by age 29 he was the 5 star Chef de Cuisine at Abacus restaurant in Dallas. He’s been twice nominated for the “Rising Star Chef “award by the James Beard Foundation and also named Best Chef by the Dallas Morning News. You may also recognize his name from Bravo Television’s season 3 of Top Chef and Top Chef All-Stars where along with fellow chef Kent Rathbun, Chef Tre competed on the Food Network’s Iron Chef America, beating the team headed by Bobby Flay.
These are just a few of Chef Tre’s accomplishments. In early 2016, he took his love for cooking and opened up TRE Cooking Concepts in order to share his passion with everyone. TRE Cooking Concepts provides couples and group cooking classes or private events right inside their own kitchen studio.
Normally a cooking class can be registered for online in advance, but our Night Out was sponsored by Sprouts Farmers Market, and personalized using only Sprouts’ freshest ingredients.And instead of receiving a lesson on how to prepare a gourmet 3 course meal (which also would have been amazing) our group was put to the test in a Iron Chef style competition.
We were given 3 ingredients and asked to prepare 2 meals. Those 3 ingredients had to be used in both meals…and we only had 40 minutes to plan, prep, cook, and plate. What were the ingredients? Black beans. Marinera. Balsamic Vinegar.
Now, I can barely finish spaghetti in 40 minutes, so let’s just say I’m glad my group had a mix of talents. While I am happy to follow a recipe “word for word” coming up with creative, new dishes on the spot is not one of my strongest traits. Add to the fact that Chef Tre and his sous chef were going to be coming around and evaluating our work, I gladly stepped aside and let the professional foodies take over.
Our group of 5 quickly divided up our roles. My job: Ingredient runner. I also proudly chopped herbs and lettuce. In the meantime, I let my other teammates whip up two incredibly delicious entrees. The first was a a Black bean burger topped with mozzerella, fresh basil, and tomato, and the second was a fresh southwestern salad topped with red onion, grape tomatoes, and marinated chicken.
While Chef Tre LOVED our Black Bean Burger — even going as far to say “I’d eat that any day of the week.” We only took 3rd place. Note to Self: Always check for bone in the chicken…yikes! After the excitement ended, we all sat down, enjoyed a glass of wine (or two) and got to know one another over a deliciously prepared meal from Chef Tre.
I’m so glad Sprouts invited the Dallas Moms Blog team to participate in such a fun night, and I cannot wait to bring my husband or girlfriends to the next Cooking Class at TRE Cooking Concepts!
To reserve your spot at TRE Cooking Concepts, visit TreWilcox.com to see a complete calendar of events. Classes last between 2.5-3 hours and are very hands-on. BYOB is suggested, but not required.
In addition, Sprouts Farmers Market is providing 1 Dallas Moms Blog reader with a complimentary $50 Gift Card to put their fresh ingredients up to a challenge in your own kitchen. Simply complete the entry form below, and 1 winner will be selected on July 13th. Good Luck!