Cookery Courses News

Low GL diet will leave you feeling Grrreat about yourself

It’s no use denying it, we all like to get our money’s worth. When cookery courses deliver both inspiration in the kitchen and also give you a metaphorical package that you can take away to deliver a healthier lifestyle, then they’ve ticked all of the ‘value’ boxes in one hit.

Whether you agree with a vegetarian lifestyle or not (thought I’d better redress the balance after the Meat Advisory Panel last week), there are evidential benefits that you can take from the plethora of plant-like ingredients that other menus don’t offer.

Whole Food Matters is running a four week cookery course at the end of the end of September that will not only show you how to get the greatest gratification from your greens, but will also garner a growth in your gift for grasping a gregarious side of your nature to spread the word beyond the granite work surface of your kitchen so others can grasp the gravitas of the grandiose goal of the course. G-g-g-grrr, I’m gobsmackingly great today!

From High Volume G’s and Gr’s to Low GL, the premise behind this series of cookery classes.

Many people turn to vegetarianism as a way to lose weight, cutting out all of the natural fats that can be found in meats believing that they’re all harmful. There’s a tome I could right on how wrong that is, but that’s the media for you (and, before you start writing in, I do mean ‘right’, not ‘write’ – bless).

The issue a lot of people have with being overweight is admitting it, first to themselves then acting upon it in socially – it’s sort of like a public admission, saying ‘hey, look, I know I’m fat, right?’ But that is the first milestone if you’re going to do anything to actively reduce the excess poundage. That’s what this course is about.

Without giving too much away, WFM is supplementing the vegetarian cookery course itself with diaries and recipes as well as offering a weigh-in every week.

Taking into account your BMI and the readout your existing body-make up gives you, you can then implement the Low GL diet in a way to shed the pounds over the four-week period and beyond.  And this really is where WMF has gone a step further, identified the key issues associated with other cookery courses to help lose weight and where they may have failed and done something about it.

Firstly, the price of the whole four-week course is at a cost – no, I’d say an investment in yourself – that I’ve seen single classes go for, especially in The Smoke. But after the first four weeks, for a nominal fee, you can extend the session in weekly, biweekly or monthly drop-ins to get an update and check your progress either at Health & Herbs and/or Moycullen, where there will be encouragement and a tad more advice to keep you on track for your weightloss goals.

So, if you’re up and around Galway, intrigued with herb-ilicious cookery, Low GL diets and perhaps looking to shed a few pounds, Liz and the gang can sure accommodate you this September.

Cookery Courses News

Vegetarian cookery course in aid of Sunni Mae Trust, Galway

In a special post today, we take our inspiration from back across the water to my homeland, that little Emerald Isle being the last outpost of Europe before the Atlantic stretches the odd few-thousand miles to run aground again at Newark – Ireland.

A couple of cookery schools over the way are promoting a special cookery course day at the end of July with the aim of raising much-needed funds for Lily-Mae Morrison. The four year old has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and proceeds raised by the three hour session in Galway on the 28th July (10a.m. – 1p.m.) will be forwarded to the Sunni Mae trust, set up by parents, dancers Judith Sibley and Leighton Morrison, to help treat Lily-Mae’s stage 4 Neuroblastoma. The trust was launched officially only last Friday (6th July) following a performance of Alice Underground by Youth Ballet West at the Galway Town Hall and it is hoped that further awareness can encourage more support to help their very poorly little girl get better.

The vegetarian cookery class is being run by Liz Nolan via her website WholeFoodMatters and will take on the form of an initial demonstration by Liz herself before up to twelve willing victims students prepare cook, serve and finally  tuck-in themselves to the results of the knowledge Liz has endeavoured to impart.

As with most classes that emanate from the WholeFoodMatters website, the whole menu (six courses) is suitable for vegetarian consumption, the emphasis being on health, well being and excellent diet as much as the meat-free angle.

Beginning with an elevenses dish of banana and pecan muffins, the follow-up course will be the trending food of the last couple of years, Hummus, cooked with a lemon-bite and pita croutons. Then there will be the more traditional starter of a summer soup, a nut roast featuring almonds, celery and apple, a side of ‘slaw and, to finish, a crumble made from summer berries.

As well as a maximum of twelve cookery students, there is the caveat of a minimum of eight to get the class off the ground. Price is €50, of which a 50% deposit needs to be put down. To confirm your interest and make your payment, you can e-mail Liz at her gmail e-addy, which is [email protected] or call/text her on 0868-099-604. Even if this is not for you, but you know someone who would love this opportunity, both to support the cause or partake in the lesson, €50 cookery class gift vouchers can be purchased from Liz via the same route.

From all of us here at, we take our hats off to Liz for organising the event and wish Leighton, Judith and of course Lily-Mae all the very best; if you cannot make the cookery course but would still like to donate, you can do so here: iDonate/Sunni Mae Trust.

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Cookery Courses News

More than just a cookery course from Arthritis Ireland

Let’s Cook! is a brand new venture being brought to the people of Galway by celebrity chef Stuart O’Keefe and is a program of free cookery courses designed to help those with Arthritis indulge in a passion they once enjoyed but now find difficult to do.

The initiative was the brainchild of Arthritis Ireland, who developed the course based on results from a healthy eating survey carried out amongst its members to see what troubled them the most about getting the right food inside them when it comes to tackling the kitchen. Relief from the pain of Arthritis is aided by quality nutrition; the problem is that, following the onset of rheumatoid arthritis, cooking fresh meals three times a day is not just a chore but a nightmare. Oh, yes – I know. (did I sound like Eric Burden, then?)

Abbott, the healthcare company, have also got involved with the cookery course, which will take place in the form of free work shops. With so much input, this particular venture will not be all about the cooking, which is what the participants of the survey suggest they need as more than a third (35%) often opted for off-the-shelf ready meals.

Further studies have shown that three quarters of those suffering with arthritis, especially when the weather’s a touch on the damp side (when isn’t it in the British Isles?) and joints become inflamed and swollen, find that just the act of cooking – let alone going to the extent of getting out to fetch the fresh ingredients daily – is a painful trial. Indeed, more than half (54%) say that regular cooking is just a no-no.

So as well as bespoke recipes prepared for the cookery course attendees, there will also be lessons in what foods can best deliver the nutrients a body needs to perform at its optimum, even with chronic conditions such as arthritis. There will also be demonstrations and instruction in the range of utensils available to sufferers to make the kitchen experience a lot more pleasant.

Science has helped develop nifty little gadgets to transfer the weight of heavy pots and pans, took the labour out of opening tins and can literally do the cutting, chopping and dicing of fresh meat and vegetables without putting unnecessary strain on those joints that ache like billy-oh when asked to do too much. Many such products will be incorporated in the cookery classes, the first of which will be on Monday 21st May at The Carlton on the Dublin Road, Galway.

I wonder if Ryan Air have got any cheap return flights – it’s a free cookery course and my nan was from Waterford…

Cookery Course News

Vegetarian cookery courses as part of a weight loss diet

What is it about Irish cookery courses that, instead of just learning the wannabe chef how to cook, they always add a little something extra to incentivise its pupils to actually use the skills they learn when they get home. Or even in business, as our review of Donnybrook Fair opined you may, last week. is another weblog that, as well as offering a whole host of vegetarian cookery courses on a regular basis has factored in a special ingredient so that you not only want to practise what you’ve learnt when you get home to impress your friends, family and colleagues but also means that you’re getting a lot more value from your cookery class than just learning to prepare, cook and serve the menu.

Instead of just presenting a timetable of events, menu and pricelist, this Galway cookery school factors in how you can build their menus into a weight loss diet, with nods of acknowledgement to the master class from which they have taken a slice of inspiration. But more than that, the whole ingredients utilised in the variety of vegetarian offerings provide the body with much greater benefits, such as balancing blood sugars and lowering blood pressure, as well as giving a helping hand to help reduce cholesterol levels for a healthier lifestyle, overall.

As you would expect from a vegetarian cookery course, there is a heavy leaning on pulses, other vegetables, fruit and nuts, seeds and rice to deliver an all-round balanced diet. Not only from main courses, but you will also learn to cook starters, desserts and sides to offer a complete meat-free meal.

The next cookery course (after today’s) is on Saturday, March 3rd at a very reasonable €40, €20 of which will be required as a deposit when booking online.

There is no danger of being lost in the crowd, either, as cooking classes have a maximum of twelve chefs-in-the-making and will be guaranteed when the size of online enrolments reaches eight (your €20 deposit will be returned if the minimum class size fails to materialise).

In the next class in Moycullen a week on Saturday, there will be a grand selection of delights on the menu, such as berry smoothies, muffins, pâté and croutons, stew, salad, dressing and shepherd’s pie all prepared, cooked and served in a meat-free zone. As a rule, there will be a demonstration by Liz first, then it will be your turn to get stuck in.

If this is not for you, but you know someone who’d just adore to learn to cook vegetarian you can buy the €40 voucher online as a gift for, I don’t know, perhaps mother’s day? As long as your ma doesn’t take it the wrong way, of course! All details on their site.