Cooking Lessons

Jack, Ashley and Roxy were offered to car pool with the others but since they had to go shopping first and needed room for their bags, Roxy ordered a large car service for the day so they could go at their own pace. Since Roxy and Ashley could not cook they planned on ordering their desserts to be delivered. However Jack frowned on the idea and told them he could help them make their desserts and it would not take that long. So after the car and driver arrived the three of them headed to a popular yet pricey grocery store that had specialty items there since Jack needed a Paella pan. After buying all the ingredients and tools for Paella, and the desserts, Jack, Ashley and Roxy had the driver take them to JD's house. Once they arrived they got out, grabbed their bags and headed to the front door.

Mrs. Davenport opened the door for Ashley, Roxy and Jack as a brown dog was there to greet them quickly. The labradoodle was big and had a brownish-wooly type of fur. The dog gave a loud bark it echoed in the entryway. JD's mom gave a quick command and it sat quietly. She then greeted the kids as she welcomed them in and escorted them to the kitchen. On the way to the kitchen they saw how fancy and big the house was. It had lots of windows, a piano and a library on the way to the kitchen. The Davenports were doing well and had a plush home. It made Jack a bit nervous as he carried the bags quietly as he followed Ashley and Roxy who made small talk with Mrs. Davenport. Then they greeted JD, Rose, Mr. Davenport, Sam and Heath as they entered the kitchen. Since they were a bit late arriving Jack needed to get cooking right away as others talked and cooked behind him.

After unpacking his ingredients and cooking tools, Jack got to work on his prep work. He was very very detailed on his work as he measured his ingredients out and began cutting up the ingredients with a lot of precision as if he had done this many times in the past. Ashley enjoyed looking at Jack cook as Roxy was curious seeing him cook for the first time. It was impressive how fast his hands moved measuring and cutting up ingredients. The girls noticed how all his cuts were the same and each piece he cute was the same size.

Roxy: So what is Jack making again?

Ashley: Paella.

Roxy: What is Pie-ya?

Jack interrupted them as he was cutting with focus, hoping not to cut his fingers.

Jack: Its (pai·ei·uh). It's a classic Spanish rice dish made with rice, saffron, vegetables, chicken, seafood cooked and served in a pan. Although paella originates from Valencia, it’s recognized as the national food of Spain and there are several different varieties. The most common types of paella are chicken paella, seafood paella, or mixed paella which is a combination of seafood, meats, and vegetables.

Roxy: Oh......what's in it?

Jack: The main ingredients in every paella dish are rice, saffron, chicken, and vegetables. From there, ingredients vary depending on the type of paella or region where it’s made. The other ingredients in this easy paella recipe include onion, bell pepper, garlic, tomatoes, parsley, frozen peas, bay leaf, paprika, saffron, salt and pepper, jumbo shrimp, mussels, calamari and chicken. I prefer thighs to breasts in the recipe since they don’t dry out as easily during longer cook times.

Ashely smirked as she nodded at Roxy.

Ashley: Its so good. You will love it.

Roxy: It does sound good.

Ashley: Sometimes I imagine Jack making me this wearing only an apron.

Roxy giggled as she covered up her mouth to hide her surprise.

Jack: Ash can you not? I'm cooking here.

Ashley: Sorry Jack. I'll keep those thoughts to myself.

Jack: I'd prefer you not have them at all.

Roxy: You are so bad girl.

Ashley: Come on you had that thought in your head as soon as I said it too right?

Roxy: Yeah but Jack will get upset if we tease him to much.

Ashley: Yeah he can get like that.

Jack: Man I don't deserve this. I am not a piece of meat you know.

Jack then began to Sauté the olive oil to a skillet over medium heat as he added the onion, bell peppers and garlic. He then sautéed them until onion is translucent before he added the chopped tomato, bay leaf, paprika, saffron, salt and pepper. Then he stirred it for five around minutes. Ashley and Roxy watched Jack as he cooked and were silently objectifying him. Jack did his best to ignore the two crazy females who seemed obsessed with him. He found that cooking was was a good distraction as he added the white wine and let it simmer for a good ten minutes. Then he added the parsley, chicken and rice. The food sizzled and gave off some smoke for a minute before he added the chicken broth. Jack then began to jiggle the pan to get the rice into an even layer as he brought the mixture to a boil. He then reduced heat to medium low as he give the pan a gentle shake back and forth once or twice during cooking.

Roxy: Are you showing off Jack? Why not just stir it?

Jack: Stirring the rice will make it mushy.

Ashley: Yeah its better when its crispy.

Jack: Some ingredients can be substituted if you are making a vegetarian version or avoiding certain meats of vegetables, but the dish needs to have a balance in order to not overpower the flavors.

Roxy: So what's left?

Jack: The Seafood for paella, includes shrimp, mussels and squid, but they cook very fast so I add them last.

Ashley: Its smells good.

Roxy: It does. When will it be done?

Jack: Very soon.

Jack then finished up the dish and let it rest with the lid on to help Roxy and Ashley make the desserts. Ashley was making Sopaipillas and Roxy was making Churros. Originally they were going to just buy them but Jack told them he could help them make them.

Roxy: So why are we making them instead of buying them again?

Ashley: Cause it taste better when they are fresh.

Jack: She's right. The stuff that comes frozen has preservatives in it and changes the flavor.

Roxy: Oh.......I guess that makes sense.

Ashley: That and we can see Jack in the kitchen longer.

Ashley and Roxy giggled a bit as Jack felt he was being made fun of again. He was tempted to leave but knew that it would ruin the mood for everyone. So he he sighed and handed the girls an apron to protect their clothing. Roxy got help from Ashley as they put on the apron. It was clear Roxy spent little time in the kitchen.

Roxy: Wow I feel like a chef now.

Jack: If only it was that easy.

Ashley: Be nice Jack or we will tease you more after this.

Jack: Meh..... hurry up.

Jack then had the girls measure out the ingredients in a dry and wet measuring cup since they were different. Then he had them mix them in the bowl with a spoon to prevent a mess with the electric mixer. Since it was a bit hard to do Ashley and Roxy took turns mixing the ingredients with a spoon. They seemed to enjoy themselves as they spilled a little flour on the counter and floor during the mixing part. Once they were done Jack prepped the pot. He then heated some vegetable oil in a large pot over medium-high heat to 360 degrees.

Then Jack showed Roxy and Ashley how to scoop the dough into a piping bag with a special star end to make the right shape. Transfer to a 16-inch piping bag fitted with a rounded star tip. Then Jack held the piping bag over the heated oil as Ashley and Roxy took turns cutting the dough with clean scissors. The two girls giggled and made snide jokes of snipping off guys they didn't like as they cut the dough. Jack was annoyed but kept his mouth shut to avoid more trouble from them. After frying for two minutes they used a special scoop to remove the golden brown from the frying in oil and transferring them to a plate with paper towels on it to dry briefly before coating them with the cinnamon sugar mixture. Then they used some tongs to put them on the dessert plate.

Roxy was excited by this and felt like her first time in the kitchen was fun. Ashley and Roxy made silly jokes about their first time with Jack in order to make him blush. They found it fun to tease him when he was unable to do anything about it. When Jack told them to stop being bad, they played dumb and said they were talking about cooking and he should not be a perv. Seeing as he was being teased, poor Jack decided to move onto Ashley's dessert.

Jack: Moving on. Ash lets make your dessert now.

Ashley: Yes. Sopaipilla time!

Ashley did a little happy jig in her excitement. Jack then got a large bowl and had the girls add the measured flour, baking powder and salt. Then they gradually add water, tossing with a fork until a loose ball forms. Jack explained that the dough will be crumbly when its ready to roll. Jack then pulled the dough from the bowl and showed the girls how to knead the dough on a lightly floured surface. They each took turns kneading the dough for three minutes until it was smooth. Then Jack explained that that had to cover and let rest for ten minutes so the dough could cook properly. He told them that if it was rushed the dough would not cook right and taste funny. Sadly the ten minutes felt like an hour as Jack was teased by Ashley and Roxy with pervy cooking jokes. They seemed to enjoy seeing Jack squirm and blush.

Jack was happy to see the time move on as he pulled out the dough and showed the girls how to roll out into a 12x10-inch rectangle. Then he had them cut into 12 square shapes with a knife. The Jack showed them how to used the same pot of hot oil to fry sopaipillas for 1-2 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towels to reduced the oil on it. Then they dusted with confectioners' sugar on a dessert plate and poured some honey in a serving bowl. Jack them told them that they were done now.

Once the food was ready the three of them cleaned up their dishes, the counters and floor where they made a mess. The last thing they needed to do was upset the Davenports after borrowing their kitchen to make the food. Ashley, Roxy and Jack thanked the Davenports for the use of their kitchen as they packed their stuff up.


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