dish Creative Cuisine Opens Doors to its Palm Springs Kitchen During Summer

Cooking classes, Wine tastings and tapas night highlight calendar

Judith Salkin Restaurants, Watch & Listen - Restaurants 0 Comments


VIDEO: Watch chef Michelle Heinrich prepare a salmon dish that you could do at home. See the recipe below.



Most Coachella Valley’s restaurants see summer as a time to regroup and prepare for the coming season, but dish Creative Cuisine chef/owners Joane Garcia-Colson and Michelle Heinrich have opened the doors to their kitchen to invite guests to get to know them and take home some cooking tips.

“We’re two crazy women who love what we do,” says Garcia-Colson of their working relationship and why they have decided to fill the summer calendar at dish with wine and tapas tastings, cooking classes, and Sunday brunches.

Cooking classes and the wine/tapas tastings are held in the Chef’s Room with window panels that overlook the kitchen. “It’s too hot to do anything outside,” Garcia-Colson said. “But the classes are a good way to start conversations with our guests.”


photos by judith salkin

(Left) Simple hummus made by dish Creative Cuisine Chef/Owner Michelle Heinrich at a July class on hot and cold appetizers. (Right) Heinrich also made a light and healthy cauliflower risotto as one of the hot appetizers.


The next scheduled class is at 11 a.m. Aug. 15 and covers the fine art of sous vide, cast iron cooking, marinating and presentation. It’s more than just recipes, Heinrich says, it also comes down to 75 minutes of interactive education and eating.

“We talk about everything in the classes, from where the freshest fish is coming from to changing recipes,” Heinrich says. Sometimes someone asks about doing some different from the recipe and I think, ‘why didn’t I think of that!’”

During a recent class, Heinrich prepared fresh seared California salmon cooked in a cast iron pan with sautéed veggies and a light white wine/butter sauce with a hint of harissa. The entire dish takes less than 10 minutes to cook. (See the recipes below).

“It’s so simple and light,” Heinrich says. “But there a lot of flavor and it’s so easy to cook.”

Prices for the individual cooking classes are $65 and include lunch. The remaining scheduled class is Aug. 22, Dessert: cream, chocolate, fruit purees, puddings and other delights. On Aug. 15, dish will celebrate the pig, with a 10-course dinner that features dishes from guanciale (cheeks) to tail. Call for reservations and dinner price.

dish Creative Cuisine is also offering Tasting and Tapas night with Garcia Colson presenting a selection of wines and small plates to accompany each wine; a presentation on rum by Desert Distillery; Sunday Brunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. throughout the summer and a $38 prix fixe dinner Thursday through Sunday from 5 to 10 p.m.


dish Creative Cuisine, 1107 North Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, 760-322-7171,



photo by jim powers

Summer Salmon on top of Summer Sautéed Vegetables.



1 6-ounce portion of fresh wild caught California King Salmon, skin removed
Kosher salt and pepper mix (4 parts salt to 1 part pepper mix)
Vegetable oil (for sautéing)    
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ teaspoon harissa paste  

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat until hot. Season fish with salt and pepper. Add oil and immediately add salmon allow to sear. Once fish is seared transfer to pan to pre-heated 325 degree oven. Continue cooking fish until internal temperature is medium rare (135 degrees), about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove fish immediately from pan to stop cooking.

Return pan to stove-top over medium heat, add unsalted and harissa paste, swirl in pan until melted and top over seared side of fish.



Selection of summer vegetables (suggestions: asparagus, zucchini, fresh peppers, snap peas) cut into ½ inch dice
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Kosher salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons dry white wine

Over medium high heat, add butter to sauté pan. When melted, add diced vegetables, as soon as vegetable begin brighten in color, add wine and sauté 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper before serving.

To plate:

Place sautéed vegetable in center of shallow bowl. Place salmon, sear side up, on bed of vegetable and top with butter sauce. Serve.


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