Chef's corner; Lawrence Fogarty, Main Street America Executive Chef and Jenny Wilkerson , Main Street America Cooking School Director

Main Restaurant executive chef Lawrence Fogarty and Main Course Cooking School director chef Jenny Wilkerson express their culinary prowess at Main Street America.



Main Street America's four chefs all experiment with food frequently and keep the menu evolving with new trends and seasonal cooking, Fogarty said.



"I am getting excited about tomato season; I am doing some fresh tomato salads," Fogarty said. "Of course, I am going to continue making smoked brisket and smoked ribs. I made 60 pounds last weekend and for the first time it sold out on Saturday. I meant for it to go all weekend, but I guess everybody liked it."



Regular menu staples include the Main Meatloaf, fried chicken salad and a grilled chicken club, their biggest seller, Fogarty said.



The restaurant will also be installing an herb garden and attaining honey bees this summer, Fogarty said.



At the Main Course Cooking School Wilkerson—along with other chefs —offer a range of single-day cooking classes.



"I am professionally trained in both baking and in savory," Wilkerson said. "I can teach you how to make a cake, I can teach you how to make a croissant and I can teach you how to make a Moroccan Tagine."



The classes are designed for people of all skill levels, and they can range from Chinese cuisine to Italian or American cuisine, desserts and basic cooking skills.



"When people leave, they have not only new recipes that they can make at home, [but] a new set of skills and also a newfound confidence and enthusiasm for cooking," Wilkerson said.



The courses range from $65 to $125, and they can be scheduled in advance at the school's website.



Background



Lawrence Fogarty has enjoyed food ever since he grew up planning lunch and dinner with his family every morning during breakfast. He attended the California Academy in San Francisco, and he has worked as a chef for 11 years.



Growing up in a Mexican-Cajun household and watching her grandmother prepare homemade meals sparked Jenny Wilkerson's passion for food. She said she decided to take the next step, and she trained in culinary arts at Houston Community College. She has worked in the business for about 10 years.



Outside The Restaurant



Fogarty enjoys preparing Vietnamese cuisine with a Tex-Mex flair in his spare time. Fogarty said he takes recipes, such as Bo Luc Lac—a beef stir fry—and gives it a twist by grilling the steak to medium rare.



After spending hours teaching students how to prepare complex recipes, such as Peking duck, Wilkerson enjoys creating and eating noodle dishes in her spare time. Wilkerson has been experimenting with Indian-Mexican fusions because of their use of similar spices.



18750 I-45, Spring, 281-825-4404 (Restaurant), 281-825-4470 (School). www.mainstreetamerica.com



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