The benefits of going to a cooking class
No matter if you’ve been cooking for years or you’re brand new to cooking you will learn something valuable at a cooking class.
January 30, 2017 - Author: Pam Daniels, Michigan State University Extension
Julia Child, famous author and American chef once said, “I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate."
The way we cook and prepare food has changed through the years
Thanks to social media and television cooking has become very popular. There are many new and enticing products on the grocery store shelves. Local growers and farmers markets are supplying us with unlimited varieties of fresh and seasonable foods. Learning how to prepare and incorporate more whole foods into our diets is also on trend.
New food trends in cooking
Specialty foods and food products, once only available in large markets, are sought after and now found more easily.
- Organic – Not a new concept, but a relatively new term used in the kitchen.
- Sustainable Foods – We’re interested in how food is grown, raised, caught and prepared.
- Food trucks – They conveniently bring fresh, processed free foods right to our neighborhoods.
- Sushi - What started in a handful of locations in the U.S. in 1970’s, Sushi is now available in most large grocery stores and being prepared at home.
- Superfoods - Acai, kale, chia seeds and wheat germ are inching their way into our recipes.
What can cooking classes offer you?
Classes can enhance your food skills and allow you to explore multiple ingredients and recipes.
Other things to consider:
- Look for a class that you will feel comfortable in. In other words don’t start out with a gourmet chef class if you’re looking for basic food skills and beginner cooking classes.
- Look for classes with both cooking and health based components. For example, classes focusing on lowering LDL cholesterol, fat and sugar levels.
Most cooking classes offer added perks
- Learning how to use food and food products that are new to you.
- Tips on food preservation, menu and budget planning.
- Kitchen skills-Most chef’s invite participants to be part of the food preparation.
- The bonus of food tasting; trying it before you buy it.
- Nutrition, portion control tips, label reading skills.
Many cooking classes are designed around specific health needs, MSU Extension’s Cooking Matters, Dining with Diabetes, Beginning Youth Cooking, Eat Smart Live Strong, Cooking for Crowds, Grow it-Cook it-Eat it, are examples of education based cooking and nutrition classes. To find a cooking class near you contact Michigan State University Extension