The Inns of Aurora has recently launched its newest food attraction, and relaunched its oldest.
Open as of January inside the former Dorie’s Bakery is Aurora Cooks! A demonstration kitchen, it doesn’t just serve food. Instead, chef Patrick Higgins and taste curator Grace Mattingly combine eating with education. At the demonstrations, Higgins may show the guests gathered at his countertops how to braise, bake bread, cook with cast iron or another technique. As he does, they get to eat what he prepares and go home with recipe cards so they can replicate it. Aurora Cooks! makes sure they can, too: Higgins purchases all his ingredients at Wegmans, and come summer, he plans to source some from local farmers markets as well. He also doesn’t work with commercial kitchen appliances, only ones that can be found in a home, such as a Vita-Prep from Target.
Higgins, who has been with the Inns of Aurora since 2008, said Thursday at the kitchen that his favorite part of being a chef is teaching. So Aurora Cooks! fit him like an oven mitt.