Learning how to cook will not only help you save money you would have otherwise spent in a restaurant, but it’s also a great way of ensuring you are eating healthy, clean food. In recent years, the prevalence of chronic illnesses such as cancer and diabetes has increased dramatically.
The American Cancer Society predicts an estimated 1.9 million new cases by the year 2022 even as diabetes continues to affect many Americans, with 11.3% of the population diagnosed with the condition, according to the National Diabetes Statistics Report.
Cooking is, therefore, an essential skill to have, both as a hobby and as a career. If you don’t know your way around the kitchen, you’ll be happy to know that almost anyone can learn how to cook. All you need to do is figure out where to take a cooking class to equip yourself with the ABCs of cooking.
You may opt to attend a physical class for your lessons, but you also have the option of learning from the comfort of your home through online classes. Examples of online classes where you can perfect your culinary skills include the following:
Masterclasses are a key player in the online learning space and offer a convenient solution for where to take a cooking class. If, for example, Mexican food is what tickles your taste buds, you could enroll in a class by Gabriela Camara. From her class, you’ll get to learn where you can purchase wholesale Mexican food so you can save money when whipping up those mouthwatering dishes.
This is another great learning space where you can enroll to get traditional vegetarian cooking skills, essential cooking skills, and skills in Italian Riviera cooking. It features international instructors who teach millions of students from all over the world. With over 54 million students by July 2022, 71,000 instructors, and 204,000 courses taught in more than 75 languages, Udemy is hands-down one of the largest training platforms around. It was established in 2010 (May) by Oktay Caglar, Gagan Biyani, and Eren Bali.
The Chef and The Dish
If you’re looking for a more personalized cooking class where you get to interact with the tutors on a personal level, then this is where to take a cooking class to sharpen those skills. You get to Skype with the tutoring chefs for a class that’s customized to your specific needs.
How Much Does a Cooking Class Cost?
According to Jen K, when making a decision concerning where to take a cooking class, go for platforms or institutions that guarantee that at the end of the classes, you’ll have learned a skill or two. Various factors influence how much a class costs. These include whether one is a child or an adult, if the lessons are done privately or in groups, and the reputation of the tutor.
Cooking Skills You Can Learn
After you’ve made a decision on where to take a cooking class, there are several skills you can learn to improve the quality of the dishes you prepare. Below are some of these critical skills:
- Safety in the kitchen: You’ll learn how to stay safe in the kitchen. Whether you’re in your home kitchen or a commercial one, it’s important that you prioritize safety. Commercial kitchens are high-activity areas that typically have more than one person working. If you’re not careful with how you carry knives when moving around, for instance, you may end up accidentally hurting someone else, or yourself, and don’t forget that these knives are sharpened to cutting or slicing perfection.
- Knife skills: You’ll also get to sharpen your knife skills, a skill that may on the surface appear easy to master, but which, nonetheless, require learning how to use a knife. When choosing where to take a cooking class, look for a trainer who has mastered the skill.
- Making eggs: You’ll learn the art of making eggs like a professional. Eggs are most people’s go-to ingredients for fixing a quick meal. While it may seem impossible, you can easily mess up an egg if you don’t know the different techniques one can use to prepare an egg.
- Food preparation skills: Basic cooking skills, such as cleaning vegetables are part of the lessons you’ll be taught during your training period. Such critical lessons should influence your decision when choosing where to take a cooking class. Before an ingredient is used to prepare a meal, make sure it’s thoroughly cleaned and fresh. It should also feature no damage. This goes a long way in preventing food poisoning.
- Sauces and dips skills: You’ll also learn how to prepare sauces and dips. In cooking, sauces are mostly used to add moisture and flavor to a meal. Therefore, learning how to make a sauce is an important skill in the kitchen. Examples of sauces you could learn to prepare are gravy, oyster sauce, and mayonnaise.
- Making a cup of coffee: You’ll also get to learn how to brew a proper cup of coffee. Nothing beats a hot cup of coffee to help you kick-start the day. Knowing how to brew coffee saves you the hustle of having to run by your local coffee shop every morning before getting to your workplace.
- Making Mocktails: You can also learn how to make mocktails in a cooking class. This is a classic opportunity to have a non alcoholic bar in your home. This class will teach you about the proper ratio between different juices to other non-alcoholic drinks you can use to whip up mocktails.
Your choice of where to take a cooking class should be influenced by the potential skills you would acquire from being there.
What Dishes Should a Beginner Cook Master?
- Risotto: According to Miami chef Michelle Bernstein, this is one of the easiest dishes to master if you stick to the recipe.
- Pizza: This beginner-friendly dish comes highly recommended by chef Matt Jennings. He adds that any meal that incorporates dough is a great way to start your cooking journey.
- Roast chicken: Roast chicken is an easy meal that takes 50 minutes to an hour to cook. Chef Emeril Lagasse recommends this as a beginner dish to introduce you to the cooking world.
- Grilled Cheese Sandwich and Fried Eggs: If you’re hoping to master the art of controlling temperature, working with butter offers you an excellent opportunity. This dish will put your skills to the test, since it requires one to avoid burning the butter in the cooking process. Robert McGee recommends this dish for cooks who are just starting out.
- Apple Pie: As long as you’ve mastered the ingredients that go into an apple pie, you don’t need to worry too much. Chef Joey Campanaro notes that as much as you may not get a perfect outcome, in the beginning, you can be sure your pie will taste good regardless.
- Spaghetti Carbonara: This dish has been around for the longest time, says chef Michael Tusk. It’s a quick-fix meal with several steps that have to be followed to perfectly execute the dish.
- Creamed Soup: The ingredients of this dish are pretty basic. The key to executing it perfectly is putting your taste buds to the test and balancing the acid and salt.
When thinking of a school where to take a cooking class, consider choosing one that not only teaches cooking skills but cooking ethics as well. Each restaurant has its own rules and guidelines to guide the staff on how they’re supposed to conduct themselves and carry out other operations within the restaurant. Below are some industry standards that ensure the smooth running of a business. You can apply them in the home setting as well.
- Ensure the Kitchen is Clean: Making sure your kitchen is clean may sometimes be quite tasking. However, if you make it a habit, it makes it easy to maintain a clean kitchen. There’s a common misconception that to maintain a clean kitchen, it has to be big. This statement couldn’t be more wrong. Sweeping the floors, having clean dishes, and arranging your kitchen not only makes your kitchen look presentable, but also helps in pest control. Cockroaches and rats thrive in areas where there’s easy access to food. Therefore, a kitchen offers an ideal place for them to hide. Other benefits of having a clean kitchen include reduced risk of foodborne diseases, increased overall hygiene in food preparation, and proper working of the equipment.
- Proper Disposal of Waste: The school or class you enroll in is also tasked with the mandate of teaching safe methods of getting rid of kitchen waste, such as used cooking oil, and recycling what is recyclable. Luckily, there are companies you could get in touch with if you need services, such as a cooking oil disposal service. Whether in a restaurant or home setting, there’s that one time you’ve had to contact your local plumbers for a plumbing service. The culprit could have been a leaking faucet, low water pressure, leaking refrigerators, or a clogged sink. Proper disposal of waste ensures your kitchen doesn’t have plumbing issues.
- Wear a Hair Net to Cover Your Hair: Whether it’s the food you ordered from a restaurant or cooked in your kitchen, finding a strand of hair in your food can put a damper on your appetite. This is why you should always cover your hair before touching any food.
- Avoid Keeping Harmful Substances in the Kitchen: This could be cleaning supplies, such as detergents, bleach, or other harmful substances, such as rat poison or insecticides. Should any of these substances find their way into a meal that’s being prepared, the effects when ingested could be deadly.
How to Care for Your Kitchen Equipment and Appliances
Kitchen equipment comes in different sizes and with different functionalities. You choose the equipment you want depending on where you intend to use it. To solve your dilemma about where to take a cooking class, consider looking for one that has the capacity to train on equipment maintenance. Below are a few tips that can help with kitchen equipment maintenance:
- Take Time to Read the Manuals: When you don’t understand the purpose of equipment or how it works, it’s quite difficult to give it the care it deserves. Reading the instructions manuals puts you in a position where you can use each piece of equipment for its intended purpose.
- Inspect the Equipment: Regular inspection of kitchen equipment will help you arrest issues that the equipment may have to prevent its complete failure. Should you spot such issues during an inspection, consider contacting Maytag repair services. Maytag is a US-based commercial appliance organization that offers services such as the repair of equipment, plumbing drain, and solutions for home heating oils.
- Buy Your Equipment from an Authorized Dealer: Buying your equipment from legitimate dealers gets you a warranty for your equipment. Should a problem arise within the warranty period, it’s resolved by professionals. Standard equipment also helps minimize accidents that are prone to occur in the kitchen, such as electrocution.
- Clean Regularly: Keeping kitchen equipment clean promotes the optimal performance of the equipment. It’s, therefore, crucial to develop a culture of cleaning all your equipment after use, and schedule cleaning for those that aren’t used on a regular basis.
- Oiling the Equipment: Just cleaning your kitchen appliances isn’t enough. You’ll also need to lubricate all the moving parts of the various appliances to reduce friction between them. In case of excess spillage, clean it up before moving on to other tasks
People are increasingly becoming cautious about what they eat. Research indicates that the number of Americans who eat homemade meals has increased from what it used to be ten years ago. In the same wave, the number of people who dine at restaurants has decreased.
The coronavirus pandemic has played a role in this new shift as people find it safer to eat food that they have prepared and ensure it’s not contaminated. Apart from being healthier, home-cooked meals can be quite tasty. However, you’ll need to possess a certain level of cooking skills to enjoy your meals. This piece offers valuable insights into where to take a cooking class to sharpen your culinary skills.