Piccolo Chef's cooking school employs incisive instructors to teach competent kitchen skills, instill the confidence to cook alone, and train the taste buds of kids and adults alike. Parents wishing to cultivate culinary independence can attempt to instill a penchant for handcrafted healthy food with one of Piccolo Chef's teen-centric classes, or younger children can graduate beyond Easy-Bake Ovens during simpler classes including the 5 Ingredients or Less! lesson. Adult cooking classes, including the Feeding a Family lesson packed with sophisticated picnic-lunch items, boost culinary prowess and expand all students' culinary horizons.
When she was growing up in India, in Britain, and in North America Kaumudi Marathé ate an eclectic array of international foods. While living in the United States, she began to blend Indian cooking techniques and spices with American ingredients, resulting in what she dubs "California Indian." Rather than keep these culinary gems to herself, she established Un-Curry to introduce others to her style of cooking and to shatter the belief that all Indian food is made of curry.
This introduction takes the form of catering and cooking classes, which cover a variety of subjects. Spices 101 grants students the low-down on spices including cumin and asafetida, and Indian Bread Basket teaches students the techniques for making naan. Marathi Salad Bowl plucks recipes from Marathé's home state of Maharashtra, which is known for its rich vegetables, and California Indian takes students on field trips to local farmers' markets in search of seasonal veggies and matching sweater sets.
Located in the historic West Adams neighborhood, Cashmere Bites’ loft-style industrial kitchen stands out from its surroundings thanks to a large, cherry-red door. Inside the modern studio, stainless steel and blond-wood counters support students as they learn to craft satisfying meals during three-hour classes that use local and organic ingredients whenever possible. Sessions typically focus on specified regional cuisines or food for special occasions, such as football Sunday or tomato-fight Saturday. The instructors also host private cooking parties and travel to homes for more intimate lessons.
The methodology I employ is an experiential approach that enables students to feel confident in speaking almost immediately. My classes are designed to help the student feel comfortable and to get her/him interacting and speaking with others right away.
In their urban kitchens from San Diego to Seattle, Hipcooks trains budding culinarians to build their own gourmet dishes from scratch. With more regard for cooks' instincts about taste than exacting recipe measurements, the classes are meant to be social learning experiences capped with a shared dinner. And the meals students learn to make are designed with a practical purpose in mind: an attempt to conjure up romance could feature a dinner of mushroom turnovers, pan-seared steak with polenta, and chocolate soufflé, and surprise guests may provoke an emergency menu of honey-pear salad and pistachio-crusted fish. Like a discriminating competitive eater, other courses focus on a specific cuisine. In Una Noche en España, for example, the chefs produce a wide variety of tapas, while students in Shortcut to Nirvana set the table with spicy curry and vegetarian samosas from the Indian subcontinent.
Eric Greenspan, co-owner and executive chef of The Foundry on Melrose, may have earned a place on the Los Angeles culinary radar for his work at hot spots including Meson G, but his reputation also has national reach. Besides besting Bobby Flay in a 2010 episode of Iron Chef, Greenspan has auditioned to take over command of Kitchen Stadium himself, most recently on The Next Iron Chef: Redemption. The chef's ever-changing menus of a la carte delectables meld French, Spanish, and creative American influences, plated with a sophistication deserving of a Caravaggio still life. Prix fixe tasting menus take diners on expertly engineered tours of flavors and textures, and vegetarian options let herbivores join the experience.
Interior-design guru Sandy Davidson decorated The Foundry on Melrose with a comfortable, art-deco aesthetic, mixing warm, antique elements with industrial accents. Bands play on select nights as mixologists craft artful cocktails and pour glasses of fine wines.