Cookery Courses News

Ontario cookery school fan club for the Great British menu

In recent times, it seems that all we Brits have wanted to do is to learn to cook like another nations. Whether it be picking up renowned cookery tips from our near neighbours in France, Italy or Spain or traversing all the way around the world to learn to cook Asian food, from Sushi to Tandoori or Thai to Malaysian – anything, it seems, to escape our own unpalatable fare.

Unless, that is, we travel out into Green Belt land, where there are cooking courses a-plenty delving back to our culinary roots, foraging for vegetables, herbs and spices, poaching game from the manor estate land or, as is the en vogue menu, sourcing locally-grown ingredients. Good luck if you live on The Thames (jellied eels is definitely a southern delicacy).

However, we may have been doing ourselves an injustice; it seems that there is an appreciation society for the Great British menu beyond our shores, after all. The Waring House Cookery School (alright, you have to go to Picton, Ontario to find this cookery course) are holding a Modern British cooking class this coming Sunday in the second of their Around the World series. Yep, it’s true. For a mere snip at $80, there are three whole hours dedicated to the resurgence of the Great British menu. It will look at our classics and the influences from Italy and India that dominate our restaurants our take-away outlets (just look to your letterbox for verification of that statement).

It seems a bit of a hike for anyone from the UK to go, but there is the Waring House Inn available for an overnight stay, located in Prince Edward County central, if one cares to uphold their patronage and pop along. And although it is part of the ongoing global cookery course running by the school, it is a stand-alone cooking class in its own rite, so if you’ve missed part one, it doesn’t inhibit you from attending this lesson in the best of British cuisine.

The UK menu aside, The Waring House Cookery School certainly emphasises fun to run alongside it cookery classes, which run practically every Thursday and Sunday, keeping the Ontario masses on their culinary toes. And I mean that – if there was anywhere in the world that has encompassed the Internet, it is this Canadian state – I defy anyone to browse the web and not bump into someone from Ontario!

I was going to stick an additional note about appropriate food to suggest, but Wikipedia have a great article on British Cuisine which wraps it up in a nutshell. No mention of The Black Country classics ‘gray pays wi’ ber-kun bits’ or ‘faggits n mushy pays’ – wonder why…?

Cookery Courses News

Adelaide press join forces in February with cookery courses

Australia – the home of barbequed shrimp, amber nectar and patisserie chefs?

Yes, you read that right. The Advertiser and Sunday Mail regularly run a hugely discounted taste of the best grub from down under series with a Mini Cookbook Collection available to its readership through token collection.  The final $2 price tag is all they pay per 20-recipe book over the counter at participating news outlets around the city with the first installment totally free and gratis.

The cook book collection this time around features some 200 recipes contributed by Australia’s top chefs, including Gary Mehigan and George Calombaris, in a 10-book collection available daily from February 4th-13th inclusive.

One interior designer has become so besotted with cooking that she has given up her well-remunerated career to indulge in the art after attending a basic cookery course at Regency TAFE (Training and Further Education). There are a whole host of cookery classes offered at this level across Western and Southern Australia, which, once passed, will qualify the student to cook at commercial level within the industry.

For thirty year old April Olores, however, it has become much more than just a vocational cooking course – surrending her career to further herself as a chef is testament to that.

In a recent interview in the Adelaide News headlining the promotion of this month’s Mini Cook Book series Ms Olores explains how she plans to quickly develop her career further.

In her current role, working at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre, she admits that the prep and serving of desserts for the functions and events they host is her absolute favourite aspect of her new career choice. Hence the desire to teach others the delicacies of patisserie cooking in the future.

Although it has always been her dream to be a professional cook, it is programs like Australian Masterchef that hit UK screens recently and the My Kitchen Rules series that have been her aspiration and inspiration to go live that dream.

As with all experts in the cullinary arts, as much as Ms Olores professes to enjoy food, from the sourcing of ingredients through their preparation and the actual cooking and serving, it is the satisfaction she derives from actually seeing her customers eat the food that she is passionate about that makes it all worth while.

If you’re itching to head down the cullinary road but are not quite ready to pack the full time job in just yet to follow your dream, check out our selection of cookery courses to see which one you’re sweet on.

Cookery Course News

When Britannia ruled the…kitchen?

If you mention ‘cookery courses’ in polite conversation, quite often the virtues of nouvelle cuisine are extolled or one instantly aspires to globe-trotting celebrity chefs who bring back recipes from around the world to treat the British public.

However, it may come as a surprise to many of you that back in the day (we are talking over half a millennia) British food used to be revered on the continent. 600 years hence, and the Italians were crazy for our cheese, which is thought to have been traded on the continent on the back of our wool exports.

A life in the Day

One food historian trying very much to revive past cooking traditions is Ivan Day, who runs cookery courses from his farmhouse in the Lake District. With over one thousand culinary items collected from centuries past, and only those required by health and safety from this one, such as a digital thermometer to check that the meat is thoroughly roasted, a cookery class here is a step back in time. Not a pair of white gloves in site!

It is definitely not a museum, however. As Ivan explains, museums store artefacts in a dead way; everything here gets used, from clockwork spitjacks to roast the meat before an open fireplace to sugar moulds popular in the 19th century to create cake decorations, supposedly the inspiration for the famous blue and white Wedgwood pattern.

Traditional Cooking Methods

But the course dates back further as Ivan’s explorations into forgotten UK cooking heritage transports us to the 16th century. At one time or another, name any of the last five centuries and Ivan will tell you, they have all been a personal favourite of his. What keeps this cooking course fresh, however, is the host’s constant self-learning. Our culinary evolution is a genuine passion for him; he rates the 18th century kitchen as one of the most sophisticated periods ever enjoyed by UK cuisine, whereas the 19th century produced ‘spectacular’ food.

Old meats new

No one reads the old books any more, of which Ivan has thousands, including handwritten notes and one farmer’s wife recipe book dating to 1830’s which was never published but is packed with recipes and processes which give us a real insight into who we were, compared to who we are. Of course, HSE is at the heart of many of today’s cooking methods and the utensils used described in cook books from days of yore, even if still manufactured, would be unlikely to pass such stringent tests.

Ivan is a genuine food archaeologist, but more; from his farmhouse, he is the last mutton ham curer in Cumbria. This is one item he’d love to see back on the menu having had a 200-year absence. From the Herdwick sheep, the breed used back then, this original recipe only takes 16 days to cure, and one afternoon to smoke.

If you’d like to learn to cook as in years gone by, few places offer more genuine opportunities than this Historic Kitchen.

Cook Books News

Cook books to add to Santa’s List

One of the many reasons people may be put off from joining a cookery school, especially a top-end one which involves interacting with other hopeful chefs, is their perceived lack of knowledge.

This is a barrier which can either stand in your way forever, meaning you never learn to cook like the competition chefs you know you can better on the television, or you can read up about it, so you can at least sound professional when you first enrol.

There are so many cullinary experts, writing in so many niches, it may be difficult to know which suits you best. The only way to find out is dive right in. The Evening Standard has produced a best of list of 2011 cook books. If there’s room in someone’s sack for one more present, perhaps you can point them in this direction…

Get your mince pies around this, for starters.

What can be more festive than a book containing Christmas recipes? For a mere £12.99, of which a portion is being donated to the National Grocers Benevolent Fund, Caravan have published ‘The Ultimate Festive Feast’. As the name suggests, its brimming with seasonal recipes with contributions such as Mary Berry’s chocolate roulade and tit-bits from the Frying Scot himself, Gordon Ramsey.

Spry’s coronation chicken streets ahead

For value for money, £30 will not buy you much more than The Constance Spry Cookery Book. Reprinted again, for the umpteenth time since it was first released in 1956, this encyclopedia of recipes could keep you in the kitchen forever. With a strong Gallic influence, Spry and co-author Rosemary Hume (accreditted with inventing coronation chicken) put together a tome worthy of its half a century plus legacy.

Jamie Oliver gets back to gastro basics

Jamie’s globetrotting menu may not be what you’d expect to see at his parent’s gastropub but, what the heck, it’s Jamie Oliver at his best. Influences from the Yemen, Guyana and the Med may not endorse the Great British Pub Menu, but well worth £30 for Jamie’s Great Britain, from Penguin.

If you’ve ever thought your cullinary expertise could conjure a cook-book then take a leaf from Claire’s Kitchen.

Claire Caminada has taken contemporary recipes and added her own twist to give them a uniqueness you won’t find anywhere else, especially not for less than the £16.95 price-tag for this collection she’s taken from her kitchen into print.

There are many more cook books in the extensive article, including Italian cooking from Alvaro Maccioni, food meets physics when Heston Blumenthal experiments with cooking in a whole new way, choices for those with a sweet tooth in Fiona Cairns’ Cake Book and Vegetarian delights in Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Veg Every Day!

You can read the full article here to get you well and truly up to speed and possibly help you in your decision when choosing which cooking course is right for you in 2012.

Cookery Class News

Our mission on

A quick glance at the ‘Top Ten Trends for 2012’ published by food&drinkstowers provides not only a reflection of where the country is economically but, as the title suggests, lays the foundation of where the UK is heading, gastronomically speaking.

There is huge emphasis being placed by the average consumer, whose feedback has constituted the basis for the results determining the report’s outcome, on getting back to basics. The best way to learn how to do this for the younger generation, many of whom have been brought up on microwave ready-meals and fast-food restaurants, is to get yourself enrolled on a cookery course.

There are so many one-off cooking classes or in-depth cookery courses, to suit every budget, that there really is no excuse not to learn how food works, why ingredients come together to produce the edible delights we see being created on television and, most importantly, what elements are good or bad for you in your diet.

One of the first lessons you will learn when joining a gym is that exercise alone is not the answer. Obesity, sadly, is becoming a plague, blighting the UK’s young and old alike, threatening the very economy that all sectors are conscious of stabilising. Today’s youngsters are tomorrow’s workforce – they will be the ones clocking on and off to ensure pension funds are there for the older generation (that’s us) to claim; it is imperative that they are taught the value of nutrition – the basis of a healthy lifestyle!  It is all relative.

The way we eat has changed beyond all recognition in just one generation, it seems. The reasons are many, few of them are good. One-parent families or households where both parents work full-time can often be stretched when it comes to preparing fresh meals every night of the week. We have got out of the habit of eating well – even understanding what foods are good for us and why.

There are so many young families starting to build a new home that simply do not know how to cook from scratch, not even the basics, it is unbelievable. Everything they know about shopping for food is how it is bought from the supermarket. Even if it’s not a frozen meal ‘ready in eight minutes‘, it is a ‘jar of curry‘ or pre-prepared in a ‘packet of Bolognese mix‘. And how some of the ‘healthy’ options can claim to be that is mystifying – they may contain less fat (being deprived of the right fat is bad for you, anyway), but are high in salt and stuffed with artificial fillers and preservatives which serve to give them ‘taste’.

Here on, we will not only bring you the best cookery courses to be found on the internet and offline, but we will endeavour to put a healthy slant on news, too. Concentrating on the freshest ideas from top chefs and cooking houses, we will bring you a master class of our own as we recommend la crème de la crème in understanding and learning about cooking – you can Sous us, if we don’t!