What happens in a Sophie Gray, destitute gourmet (dg) class/demonstration?
A dg class is a fun, information packed event. During the course of a demonstration Sophie will explain the “philosophy” of destitute gourmet and how to save money at the supermarket, demonstrate around 5-6 recipes and share loads of tricks, techniques, anecdotes and suggestions to make family food, healthy, apetising and inexpensive. The recipes are good examples of the principals and techniques being demonstrated and tastings are provided.
Sophie provides all the ingredients and 100 recipe booklets for the event, (additional recipe booklets can be ordered, for a small fee).
How many people can attend?
As a host you have the opportunity to sell up to 500 tickets to your event, depending on your venue. Sophie will prepare the same number of dishes, usually around 5-6, and offer 100 “tastes” of each dish. So a group of 100 will taste each dish, a group of 200 will taste 3 dishes and a group of 500 will get the opportunity to have a taste of one of the dishes. You can charge whatever you feel appropriate for your tickets, groups generally charge between $25-35 per head.
How long is a dg demonstration?
A demonstration takes approximately 2½ hours. We start at 7pm and finish around 9.30-10pm so people can eat and chat before they leave. Sophie will arrive 2 hours before the start of the class to set up, do pre class food prep with the kitchen helpers.
What kind of kitchen & venue is needed?
Churches, community centres, clubs and halls often have kitchens that adjoin an auditorium via a large servery. This type of set up works very well as visibility is the key. Attendees need to be able to see the bench. If visibility is a problem, a live video feed projection is a good solution. A commercial oven is not needed but a regular oven must have a minimum of three shelves and be of a standard size, many newer ovens are very small. Two regular ovens or one commercial oven is ideal. PLEASE check the ovens at your venue to ensure the oven is in good working order (try baking a batch of scones – this is a good quick test). Check there are sufficient shelves. A trestle set up in front of the audience is not recommended as Sophie needs ready access to running water, stoves etc and a trestle is significantly lower than a kitchen bench. Seating should be arranged theatre style in semicircular rows in front of the kitchen, this really is the best arrangement for visibility, serving the food and keeping the audience engaged.
What do I need to supply?
Sophie requires two helpers in the kitchen from when she arrives at 5pm until the end of the demonstration – preferably adults. No cooking skills are required, just a willingness to assist with prep, follow instructions and do lots of dishes. This is an important support role, these helpers will be in the kitchen from 5pm until around 9.45. A minimum of 4 helpers are needed for kitchen clean up afterwards and four people to jump up and pass around platters etc during the session- the 4 “servers” could if necessary be member of the audience, but ideally not. You will also need to supply 15+ old tea towels for dishes, and two side plates and two forks for each attendee, disposables are fine. We recommend having drinks available on arrival and water/juice throughout the duration of the class, pens for people who wish to take notes and coffee/tea to finish. This gives Sophie a chance to get out of the kitchen and talk to your guests, answer questions etc. Also someone dedicated to manning the dg merchandise/books table before and after the class for people who wish to purchase (cash or chq only, we don’t have credit card or eftpos facilities).
A lapel microphone is recommended and if Sophie is flying to your town, luggage limitations may require you to provide some basic cooking equipment, serving platters etc for the event. The dg office will supply a list of equipment – all standard stuff you would have in a home kitchen. We may also liase with a local bookstore in order to have books available for sale on the night. Otherwise Sophie will bring all cooking equipment, serving platters and merchandise with her.
Interested in hosting a dg event in your area? For pricing and availability email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name, the name of your group, your town/city and a contact telephone number.