You may have heard people talk about cooking as “culinary art” or mentioning “the art of cooking” when referring to food.
When you take ordinary ingredients, such as spices and vegetables, and you create a full on extraordinary dish, then that is definitely a form of art.
Generally speaking, the first cooking experiences we have are with either watching our parents or grandparents cook when we were younger.
After moving out and living on our own, we realize that all that watching or passing them the salt and pepper did not make us an expert cook at all.
We begin to experiment on our own and once we make something that we can eat and enjoy, we feel proud and want to continue trying to cook new dishes.
Cooking can become a hobby for some, others find it very relaxing and entertaining, there are others who have no idea of how to even start.
Whether you are a true beginner or love to cook for friends and family, cooking classes will always be a great and fun experience. Plus, a class that lets you enjoy some good food after is already a huge motivating factor!
Looking Back at Cooking’s History
It is hard to know the exact date of when cooking began. Based on evidence and evolutionary analysis, it is suggested that our human ancestors began to cook around 1.8 to 2.3 million years ago.
It is also believed that Homo erectus may have begun cooking 500,000 years ago.
Back then, cooking didn’t involve fancy stainless steel cookware sets, it was all about placing a whole fish or pieces of raw meat on a stick and roasting it over an open fire.
Lucky for us, we get to enjoy the benefits of cooking’s evolution.
Cooking for many is all about social gatherings, enjoying a great meal with friends or family or just plain and simple, a very enjoyable thing to do.
Whether it is roasting a chicken for Sunday family dinner, baking a delicious carrot cake, boiling your morning egg before work, frying some delicious zucchini slices, steaming some spicy pork potstickers or smoking some BBQ pork ribs for Football Sunday.
If you cook now, then you have definitely used most, if not all, of these cooking methods for your meals.
Home-cooked meals will always be healthier because you’ll have better control of your portions, limit the number of salts or sugars and the products will be more natural versus buying some frozen processed burger at your closest fast food joint.
The biggest reason why people should cook more: cooking is fun!
Taking simple ingredients and transforming that into a delicious and colorful dish can make you feel accomplished and will give you satisfaction.
You’ll also enjoy eating something you just made.
Most Popular Types of Cooking Classes
If we look back at history, such as cooking shows, old television series or cookbooks, cooking used to be seen as a woman’s thing only.
Fortunately, that is not the case anymore.
Because there are both men and women in the cooking industry, more and more people have begun showing an interest.
Some take cooking as a hobby and have fun with it, which is great because there are so many types of cooking classes out there that can help people become better cooks.
There are some cooking classes that culinary students will need to take in order to begin to learn more complex cooking classes. These cooking lessons can also be fun to take even if you are not attending cooking school.
When learning the basics, you can also become a better cook at home.
The first one is learning about French cooking.
French cuisine is seen by many as the “mother cuisine”. It is one of the oldest, finest and has been carefully perfected after many generations.
Some famous French techniques that you may not even realize were French are cooking methods such as flambéing, sautéing, poaching, broiling, braising and baking.
Taking a French cooking class can really perfect the way you read and follow recipes in the future.
The second type of cooking class is a very important one, baking.
This cooking lesson is essential when it comes to any culinary institution program.
Baking is always done in an oven and you can bake anything from bread, cookies, cakes, tarts, meats, and vegetables.
The third type of cooking class that we highly encourage you to take are international cuisines.
These can be cooking classes in Japanese, Indian, Mexican, Thai or Italian.
Even if it is just for fun, having an understanding of international cuisines can make you a better cook at home.
You will be exposed to new techniques and tastes when taking international cooking classes and you may just find a new favorite cuisine!
The Top Cooking Classes in the USA
If you are currently residing in the USA and wish to start taking some cooking classes, look no further and check out the following spots.
With both coasts covered we are sure there will be one to grab your attention.
If you happen to find yourself on the west coast, there are two cooking classes that are worth checking out.
The first one is in the wine country, Napa Valley. Cakebreak Cellars will mix delicious gourmet dishes with their local wine.
Still in California, you can also check out San Francisco Cooking School. This is a culinary institution but you can sign up for one-time cooking classes.
They have a variety of classes such as knife sharpening, how to cook the perfect steak and pastry courses.
Moving on to Chicago, you can take a class at The Chopping Block, where cooking classes are made for anyone with an appetite to cook, learn and have fun.
If you want to learn more about traditional American barbecue then head on over for a weekend at The North Carolina Barbecue Society.
You’ll learn everything from creating rubs, preparing a grill and cooking pork ribs!
Interested in something a bit more intimate?
Zero George Street is located in the heart of Charleston, South Carolina and was once named one of the best cooking classes in the world.
These cooking classes will take place at their hotel kitchen where you will learn with their very talented sous chef.
Finally, if you are visiting the Big Apple, you can book a cooking class at the once named “Best Culinary School in America” – Institute of Culinary Education or ICE for short.
You will find a variety of cooking classes all from cooking basics, dim sum, party cakes or street Thai food.
The 10 Best Cooking Classes To Try Around the World
If you are booking a trip abroad soon and wish to incorporate some cooking classes to your itinerary, we encourage it! Let’s hope one of the following is in your upcoming destination.
If you are traveling to Thailand, check out the cooking classes at the Four Seasons Resort Cooking School. It is located in the largest city of northern Thailand, Chiang Mai, where your cooking class will include a fun local market tour with the chef.
Heading to Mexico? Check out Los Dos in Merida, Yucatan! This cooking class is a whole day experience with a visit to a local market, learning about Mexican and Mayan culture and ingredients.
Visit a small traditional French village 15 minutes away from Cannes to enjoy a typical French cuisine class at Le Mas Candillier in Mougins, France.
Tierra Negra in Buenos Aires, Argentina will teach you how to make their traditional and iconic empanadas, plus, you’ll get to enjoy them with delicious Argentinian wine.
Why not take your next cooking class in a 13th-century medieval castle? Check out cooking classes at Castello di Vicarello in Tuscany, Italy.
If you want to experience a farm to table cooking class, visit the Agrarian Kitchen in Tasmania, Australia where you’ll get to visit the property’s five acres filled with vegetable gardens.
Book a cooking holiday at Philipkutty’s Farm in Kerala, India to experience cooking classes with a traditional Kuttanadan family in their own private island home.
Escuela de Arroces y Paella in Valencia, Spain will teach you the traditional paella recipe, which is made up of rabbit, chicken, vegetables, and snails!
Paragaea in Parga, Greece will teach you all about Mediterranean cuisine and traditional Greek dishes.
Feeling adventurous? Cape Malay Cooking Safari in Cape Town, South Africa will take you through the historic Malay Quarter before you cook a traditional meal with a Bo Kaap family.
Cooking can take you on an adventure on its own, even from the comfort of your own home. Experimenting with different cuisines, ingredients, and recipes can be fun and delicious!