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ruthdelacruz | Travel and Lifestyle Blog

Ruth dela Cruz is a travel and lifestyle blogger in the Philippines. She loves writing about her travels. Drop her a note at admin@ruthdelacruz.com. The internet knew her as @ruthilicious.

Snaps @ruthilicious

November 30, 2018

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council and Culinary Institute of America

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council & Culinary Institute of America 

"I am a blogger from Manila, Philippines; and I love writing about my travels, adventures and US Pulses".  *wink *wink 

That's exactly how I introduced myself to the bloggers, chefs and partners from Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. Certified Master Chef Brad Barnes and Chef Gypsy Gifford were also in that classroom in the Academy of Culinary Arts Cambodia. 




Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Hello, student.

I flew in to Cambodia to join the U.S. Dry Bean Council (USDBC) and U.S. Department of Agriculture for a technical workshop and learn more about U.S. dry beans especially its versatility in both Asian and Western cuisines.

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

It's been a while the last time I attended a class - or even worked in a real well-equipped kitchen. 

I was not kidding when I said I love writing about US Pulses. Truth is, my interest in this superfood started when I was invited to an event in 2016. From then, we tried to incorporate using more dry beans in our dishes at home (thankful to mom for equally loving good food!). Before I knew it, it has become part of my lifestyle. I would say, I do not crave for dry beans or pulses - or make it my only choice when it comes eating/dining; but more of a preference. I can be adventurous when it comes to food and I am okay to eat anything that would benefit my body. I still eat my Cheetos. But everything should be in moderation. 

What are Pulses?

Pulses are dry peas, lentils, chicken peas, and edible beans like kidney beans, navy beans, pinto beans and black beans. Pulses are part of the Legumes family like peanuts and soy. They are packed with protein, fiber and essential nutrients. They good food alternative to meat and uses less water during production which makes it more environment-friendly.

The USA is one of the top exporters of pulses, which are healthy, nutritious, and easy to cook with. Pulses also help decrease greenhouse gases, increase soil health,
and use less water than other crops.

Examples of dry beans are the red kidney beans in the favorite Filipino dish, Halo-Halo, the navy beans in Pork&Beans, and there's a Green Peas snack. 

Welcome Dinner at Digby's 

During our first night, we had dinner at Digby's where we had dishes specially created for us using dry beans. Digby's is a restaurrant in Phnom Penh Cambodia that serves good food, and variety of drinks, including wines. 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
digbys cambodia
digbys cambodia
digbys cambodia
digbys cambodia
with Rob (Paper & Page), Kat (The Hungry Kat) and other delegates from Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia

Creative and Healthy Menu Development with U.S. Dry Beans

Aside from learning more about US Dry Beans and pulses, the handling and preparation, we also learned about food trends, and cooking tips. 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Learned a lot from this kitchen rockstar!
Brad Barnes, Director of CIA Consulting
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Dee Richmond from Dry Bean Council
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Chef Brad and Chef Gypsy showed us one easy recipe using dry beans!
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
That fried chickpeas they served us is super! 


Cooking Workshop

I previously joined cooking workshops during travels, but for this workshop, it was a totally different experience.

Related Read:

born to cook barcelona cooking workshop

Although I know some cooking methods and concepts, I kept an open mind in learning new ways. Aside from learning new tricks like blanching and peeling tomatoes, cooking lentils and plating for better food shots, I also understood other people's work ways and discipline. I am proud to have worked with team members who value teamwork and resourcefulness. 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

We were assigned 2 dishes - 
Chickpea, Split Pea, and Pearl Barley Salad with Cider Vinaigrette and the Poached Scallops with Lentil Ragout.

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Team 4!
Pum, Pook, Ruth, Dang

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America


We cooked and prepared the dishes from scratch - meaning we did the slicing, cutting, blanching and cooking. We encountered a little bumps but with guidance of Chef Brad and Chef Gypsy, we were able to finish on time.
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

I admit that I am afraid to stay close to the stove or anything that emits fire (especially I was not in a complete chef's uniform) but I accepted the challenge. It was my first time to cook a dish using lentils. I notice that it takes a while to cook, and you have to manage your time wisely by preparing other ingredients or helping your team members. 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Pum and Pook cooked a dish using pearl barley 

The other teams prepared dishes like soups, salads, pasta and falafel using different dry beans. I am amazed at how flexible dry beans are. I wish I could recreate the dishes at home. 

We were the first team to finish, so I checked out the other team's recipes. I felt that what was assigned to our group were rather easy recipes. Some did different styles of cooking like grilling and even making pasta from scratch. 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Sir Henry Lim
 (VP For Sales and Marketing, Ideal Macaroni & Spaghetti Factory, Inc)

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

Presenting our dishes: 
(I love that the Academy of Culinary Arts Cambodia has a designated area for food photography)

Chickpea, Split Pea, and Pearl Barley Salad with Cider 
Vinaigrette and the Poached Scallops with Lentil Ragout
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

I felt like we were in the MasterChef (Junior) class because Chef Brad and Chef Gypsy gave us more than cooking tips and tricks, but also over dosage on patience, encouragement and support.  Thank you!!! 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America

Thank you U.S. Dry Bean Council and US Department of Agriculture for having me again! 
I have so much respect to chefs and product development teams who can create such dishes that are healthy, delicious and equally pleasing on an Instagram feed!

This is not the usual travel story that you would read in this blog, but I hope you find this post helpful and informative. Please do like and share the love. 

Cooking Workshop with US Dry Beans Council by Culinary Institute of America
Follow me @ruthilicious



Check out https://pulses.asia/  for more information and recipes using U.S. Pulses. 


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