My mom and I took a Hanukkah cooking class.
I’m going to be absolutely real with you about our experience, but I don’t want to trash this sweet lady’s business, so you don’t get any names.
Is that ethical?
Whatever. It’s Christmas. Er, Hanukkah.
The bottom line of our experience was that by the end of our 3.5 hours together, we were very fond of not only our teacher, but our other classmates. We (my mom and I) enjoyed spending time together and the food (most of it) was really good.
That’s the “glass-half-full” general synopsis.
Brussels sprout, pomegranate, apple, walnut salad: good
There was also a slab of salmon that we helped to prepare but didn’t eat.
I could’ve taught this class better.
And maybe you’ve considered teaching a cooking class of your own someday, and you need some tips from a student?
1. Most students don’t come for you to read the recipe to them. I’d venture a guess that most can read and have cooked from a recipe before. Have your recipes memorized. At the very least, have a vague idea of what’s coming next. At times it felt like we paid our fee to meet up with 4 strangers and just cook with them- it didn’t feel like we were being taught anything.
(Just FYI, my mom’s “cleavage” is a Wonder Woman apron. Important clarification.)
2. Have the utensils, pans, etc. all set out. We wasted a lot of time waiting for her to find the right bowl or ingredient.
3. Speaking of ingredients…
This one was probably my biggest pet peeve. If a student has paid a fair price for a cooking class, please please PLEASE purchase brand new ingredients. On at least two occasions we were given opened jars from the chef’s personal refrigerator to use. And while I’m not a complete germaphobe, what if, what if the chef’s husband had a penchant for dipping a spoon into the apricot jam, licking it, and sticking it back in? It’s his house. He should be able to do that, but I don’t want to eat after that…
At this point, my mom’s not too sure…
4. Finally, please stick to the time allotted for the class. If you say that class ends at 8:30, please be close to that time. We were an hour behind and neither my mom nor I wanted to eat or get home that late.
All in all, we had a good time but I wouldn’t take another class from this chef.
Bonus: there was leftover rugelach. I may or may not have eaten 3 pieces for lunch.