Dallas is known for having an array of some of the finest restaurants in the country. One of the shining stars in Dallas is Abacus. Abacus is one of six five-star restaurants in Dallas. Those outside of Dallas, may remember Top Chef contestant Tre Wilcox. Tre worked at Abacus. He has since moved on to start his own ventures. Owner and Executive Chef, Kent Rathburn is quite acclaimed both locally and nationally. Chef Rathburn and his brother beat Bobby Flay on the premier episode of Iron Chef. My husband and I have dined at Abacus a few times. Our favorite experience was our first visit when we indulged in the nine-course "small plates" tasting menu. These plates may have been billed as small but they were so filling. It was one of the most amazing meals we have ever had.
Last week, I noticed a listing in the paper for a summer berry cooking class taught by one of of Abacus's pastry chefs. The menu sounded fabulous: strawberry shortcakes with mascarpone whipped cream, blueberry lemon curd tart; and blueberry, peach and strawberry turnovers. Overall, it was a fun evening where I learned some great techniques and recipes for using up those wonderful summer berries that will quickly be fading from the farmer's markets. The recipes used were very adaptable and gave me many new ideas for some wonderful creations of my own.