A pretty cool thing happened in January. I attended a virtual cooking class on Thursday, January 14th, hosted by celebrity chef Michele Ragussis. An invitation for the class had gone out in late December, telling participants they’d be guided through the process of preparing scratch-made butternut ravioli, fit for the winter season. I was in!

Prior to January 14, I received in the mail this well-presented box, containing most all of the materials and ingredients I’d need to be successful. The few non-perishable ingredients were to be procured on our own, as well as rounding up pots, pans, and staple utensils from our own kitchens.

The evening of the event, Chef Michele kicked it off with humor; the Twin Cities women on the Zoom looked ready for the challenge; and I was feeling confident. That is, until my banging of pots and pans must have caused me to miss a key step, I fell behind, my pasta was clearly not turning out, and I lost my ability to stop, laugh and engage with the group (Note: I later learned I was hardly the only one!). With a whole lot of scramble and chaos, I managed to eke out a small number of un‘pillowy’ raviolis. They were ‘edible’ and my family,having witnessed the whole affair, knew best to extend cordial reviews.

Post event, I certainly felt the urge to thank Chef Michele for a the joyfully humbling experience, but also perhaps was seeking a little affirmation? “Yes, I really can cook. See, I have this granola…” So, I uncharacteristically direct-messaged her on Instagram, and wound up sending some Gustola and one of our Buffs to her home in NY. She kindly replied with a few Instagram stories, modeled our "dope" headbands, and said Gustola Granola is "the bomb"!

Lesson learned: Live, cook and CONNECT with Gusto!


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