Nothing kick-starts a night of passion and romance like a good Italian meal, accompanied by the appropriate vino of course, but what can you do if you want to avoid the clichéd Spag. Bol. or extend your Italian culinary prowess further than a Lasagne? Perhaps a ‘no experience necessary’ Italian cookery course may be the added extra ingredient that those first date or impress the rellies meals are missing.
The Cooking Academy is hosting just such a cookery class – amongst the myriad of other influences they draw upon to produce their schmorges board of international cuisine – and if learning about the nitty-gritty tomato-based meaty cooking sauces or would love to know how to make fresh pasta (you will never buy shop-bought, again), then this cookery course is perhaps all you’ll need to know about learning to cook Italian, from a standing start, at least.
This particular cookery school doesn’t simply do the “learn to cook Italian” thing, though. One of the passions that will hit you like a sack of tomatoes when you take your Italian cookery lesson with The Cooking Academy is how integral knowledge of the nutritional values of the ingredients is as much a part of the educational process as is how to put them together to make the dishes.
Italian food has earned a reputation of being oily and the average dieter wouldn’t go near a full-blooded Lasagne or Spaghetti Bolognese for fear of the fat and oil content, not to mention the carbs, but these are myths that belong in urban legend. The natural fats are mono- and polyunsaturates, as is that found in olive oil; as part of a calorie controlled diet, this type of nutrition is essential; you will be taught an overview of basic Italian diet, too, and where and how the traditional dishes fit into it.
The cookery courses are a decent six hours, much longer than many one-off cookery classes; as such, a choice of beer and wine (within reason) and fruit juice is provided in the price, as is lunch itself and all of the ingredients you’ll need; a complete recipe pack of what you have learnt, as well as the food you have prepared and cooked, is available as a take away basket once your six hour induction in Italian is complete. The preparation of the dishes is obligatory and is covered before serving the dishes that you will learn so much about, whether you have had experience in any type of cookery, or not. Full details and times are available on The Cooking Academy’s website.