Sunday, March 4, 2012

William Sonama Cooking Class

By: Christy

One more MBA class down (if I pass--fingers crossed). Thursday was my executive accounting final and I couldn't be more happy to have that class under my belt. I can remember 8 weeks ago how scared I was to take this class; Even though I have always been good at math, numbers flat out intimidate me.

Some people feel the exact same way about the kitchen. I like to call it feeling "kitchen illiterate". Whether it was not having a family that cooked beyond the microwave or take out, someone that has attempted to cook a few times but always seemed to mess up, or maybe you are starting a new cooking/baking hobby and feel totally intimidated by the kitchen, all its gadgets and ingredients--This is COMPLETELY normal.

There are lots of tools to help us amateur bakers and cooks find our way in the kitchen. First and foremost my favorite tip is to buy the book, "The Joy of Cooking". Within this book there are definitions, explanations, and instructions for pretty much all cooking questions. This book is the bible of cooking and usually has some of the best and most basic recipes out there. Other than that, there are endless cookbooks, magazines, blogs, tv shows,, etc available to pretty much anyone. Cookbooks and magazines can get pricey so check out their corresponding websites. Many times they will have the recipes that are listed in their magazines/cook books, online for free! If you prefer to have the tangible hard copy, hit up your grandparents or family members to see if they have any good cookbooks and even better try going to yard sales (score some gently used cookware while you are at it!) or used book stores/thrift stores. You are sure to find some diamonds in the roughs!

Blogs (just like ours), cooking tv shows, and are awesome tools too. Find a websites/videos that give step by step instructions with pictures to offer you the most fool proof way of cooking. When you first start cooking or baking these step by step instructions can help you become more confident with your skills and also can be very educational in the process.

While I do find myself in the kitchen pretty frequently, there is still TONS of room for improvement in all areas. That is why I enjoy taking different kinds of cooking classes. Most of my past classes have been based around baking and decorating cakes but I got very lucky when recently a coworker asked me to join her for a William Sonoma Cooking Class. It was so much fun, super delicious, and a wonderful learning experience. (Thanks, Kathy!)

So how can you join in on the fun too? Check out these different stores below. Most local stores will post class schedules and instructions but to give you a head's start here are the links.

William Sonoma Cooking Classes
Whole Foods Cooking Classes
Publix (not really a class but they cook a recipe in house during the lunch hour and give out free samples)

In Nashville, (and I am sure most larger cities) there are several other companies that offer cooking and baking classes with out having to enroll in a whole program. Some popular choices in Nashville (besides the classes listed above) are:

Viking Cooking School Cooking Classes
Sweetwise Cake Decorating Classes

These classes are fun for a girls night, date night, and also make great presents for all occasions for the cooks in your life that are eager to learn more!

Here is a picture from the William Sonoma Class we took. It was a "romantic evening" menu. We prepared Stuffed Beef Tenderloin, Phyllo Wrapped Asparagus, Crispy Mashed Potato Bake, and Chocolate Strawberry "love" puffs (chocolate cream puffs with strawberry creme filling and a dark chocolate glaze). Everything was beyond delicious and I also scored some amazing tips and bought quite a few new William Sonoma ingredients and cooking tools I can't wait to try!
If anyone is interested in any of the recipes, please send us a message. I'd be more than happy to share!

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