Jose Andres Paella Demo/face off

Jose Andres was easily the most entertaining chef I have ever watched. He included the crowd into every part of his demo and made sure that we were having an amazing time specifically by providing jokes, drinks and obviously incredibly tasty food.

First, everyone was eagerly awaiting his arrival since he typically does an extravagant entrance. This year he duped everyone by coming up the beach on a four-wheeler with a group waving swords and wearing masks. We all soon realized who we thought was driving the four-wheeler was, in fact, not Jose. We all ran up to the tent to see what was going on and as soon as the masked man identified himself, Jose ran up behind everyone to see if we were all surprised…and we definitely were!

After his arrival, Andrew Zimmern gave a wonderful introduction of the chef and it all ended with Jose giving him a big wet kiss on his head! Jose then surprised us all again by facetiming Eric Ripert and sharing the real reason he was unable to attend this year; he was afraid to face off against Jose… according to Jose.

After the great conversation with Eric, the paella demo began. He shared about the ingredients and the process all while cracking jokes! He talked about how they cook the onion for 5 hours which helps it to get sweet and caramelized and then they add in tomato, so it makes like a marmalade. Jose joked that this is why people attend restaurants – “no one wants to prepare onions for five hours!” However, this is a great tip to use vegetables to combat those sweet cravings we all get. If you use sweet vegetables or cook vegetables to a point where they get a sweeter flavour you will crave much less added sugar in your diet!       

Speaking of sugar, halfway through the demo he showed the guests how to chug champagne out of a decanter and then had it passed around – his demo honestly felt like the best party ever!

I am one for balance so 80% of my diet is healthy and 20% is for indulging and I have to say  although the alcohol was freely flowing like most of the events at the Cookout I never felt like I overindulged because the food was filled with all the best quality and nutrients. This paella was made with all the freshest and tastiest ingredients which made it the perfect event for a foodie that is health conscious . I would easily recommend it to anyone! This is an event that is worth every single calorie!

 Article by Ashleen Parker