Learn to cook in 2011
Can you remember the resolutions you made at the
start of January? Forget those tired pledges that just focused on denial – when it comes to resolutions worth sticking to, February is the new January. Make a pact with yourself to acquire a new
skill, by learning to cook like a professional chef.
If it’s Michelin precision you hanker after, sign up for a chef’s table masterclass at Gordon Ramsay’s
Pétrus. Head chef Sean Burbridge will teach you to create a three-course menu specially devised by him – and show you a few tricks of the trade along the way. Once the meal is finished, sit at
the chef’s table to enjoy it, sipping wines chosen by the sommelier to accompany your dish. Masterclasses cost £150 per person.
If it’s time you’re short of, L’atelier des Chefs (pictured, above) has the answer with its 30-minute Cook, Eat and Run class, designed to slot
comfortably into your lunch hour. The class promises to help cooks of all abilities become more at ease in the kitchen; in only half an hour, the atelier’s professional chefs will teach you to
prepare an elegant main course dish that you can eat in the dining area or pack up and take back to the office. (Longer masterclasses are also available.) Classes start at £15 per session and can
be booked online up to 28 days in advance.
Fans of fusion food can watch Peter Gordon, the brains behind The Providores and Kopapa, work his magic at Leith’s School of Food and Wine on March 15. Gordon will
demonstrate six dishes, including duck and coconut laksa with soba noodles, squid and coriander. The class runs from 9.45am-4pm and costs £250. Leith’s also offers aspiring cooks a wide range of
one-day courses, including classes on Saturdays.
For cooks who want to master one particular skill, the masterclasses at Trinity restaurant might be the way to go.
From slow-cooking to making homemade bread or pasta, Adam Byatt and his team will help you fine-tune your technique. The restaurant also offers private bespoke classes, either in the restaurant or
in your own home. Find out more and book a class. Classes start at £40.
For a quick-fix rather than a one-on-one lesson, watch top Italian chefs Giorgio Locatelli and Francesco Mazzei, along with chefs from some of London’s best Italian restaurants, lead cookery
demonstrations at La Dolce Vita on 10 March. An exhibition of all things Italian at Islington’s Business Design Centre, the event also offers the
opportunity to sample a range of Italian wines and regional produce not usually available in the UK.
The event is open from 5-8pm on 10 March; 10am-6pm on 11-12 March; and 10am-5pm on 13 March. Tickets cost £5 per person when booked in advance. Book a ticket for opening night and receive a
complimentary glass of Bisol Prosecco on arrival.
Sweet-toothed chefs can indulge themselves in chocolate-making workshops, the perfect antidote to all that post-Christmas
denial. Plump for master of the trade William Curley, who regularly teaches fans of his truffles and sea salt caramels exactly how to make them; he also leads classes in making fine chocolate
pâtisseries. Classes start at £75. If your loved one is a chocoholic, treat them to a special Valentine's Day chocolate-making workshop, where they'll make their own chocolate heart filled with
raspberry truffle. This two-and-a-half-hour class costs £100 and includes chocolate tasting and a complimentary glass of Champagne.