Like learning to juggle, learning to cook requires patience, a distraction-free environment, and the ability to handle multiple eggplants at once. Become the ringmaster of your kitchen with today's Groupon: for $35, you get a cooking class at Prep Kitchen Essentials in Seal Beach (a $75 value).
Prep Kitchen Essentials' impressive faculty of professional chefs guides the culinary inclined masses through hands-on classes that cover a wide variety of cuisines. Kitchen apprentices can choose from any of the 2.5-hour course offerings, which include sessions on gourmet pizzas and flatbreads, workshops on rolling sushi, and a Tastes of Spain class, wherein students concoct a shrimp dish spicy enough to make a dragon weep tears of buffalo sauce. Participatory lessons include a cupcake seminar taught by Susie Millis, who teaches students to bake pumpkin cupcakes with salted caramel, root-beer-float cupcakes, and chocolate soufflé cupcakes with chocolate mint cream. Gain respect from disobedient vegetable patches by participating in a knife-skills class with Martin Gilligan. Seasoned home cooks and those befuddled by boiling water can benefit from the individual attention bestowed on each student. Call ahead to reserve a stove.
Prep Kitchen Essentials
Award-winning chefs can be found at Prep Kitchen Essentials, sharing knowledge to small groups of students. The cooking-supply retailer and culinary school enlists world-class kitchen artists to teach its introductory cooking courses. This level of access to acclaimed chefs is a rarity in the cooking-school world, and the newcomers who populate these beginner-level classes are immediately inspired as they learn the basics of preparation and the art of elegant presentation. Prep Kitchen's curriculum attracts a diversity of students, including professional chefs-in-training. In addition to adult courses, instructors kindle the talents of budding chefs with children's cooking classes and a summer camp where campers engage in string cheese tug-of-war and tell ghost stories about over-cooked risotto.