The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

cooking/baking classes?

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tmarz's picture
tmarz

cooking/baking classes?

What do y'all think about giving cooking/baking classes? What if I were to start a place that did that. I know you would have to find a large enough space... equip it... etc. Is the desire there? Any input would be great.

 

-Tyler

PastryPaul's picture
PastryPaul

I think there is a definite interest in food and cooking out there. I assume you are talking about lessons to individuals... i.e. short one night or one day things, or maybe several nights spread over several weeks?

We get asked for tips, recipes, and even training/classes. I also know of a husband/wife team (he is a Chef, she a Pastry Chef) who are organizing dinner parties that are sort of like Tupperware parties. The deal is that they will take a group of 8 - 10 friends and teach them to prep and cook the meal they will eventually eat.

What with space and dining requirements, time spent on interviews and menu selection, etc, the "experience" ends up costing about as much as a fairly high-end restaurant outing, but with more work for the diners!

For now, they're doing this on the side. There is a lot of interest, but many balk at the cost. The concept could use some fine tuning as well.... they only do one dinner a night (which means only three a week). Also, some things must be done in advance so it has to be cooking-show style... "Bake for 2 hours at 300!" (open other oven) "and here is what it will look like." Talk about boosting food cost!

Do some heavy research. Not just like "Would you have an interest in <whatever>" but more like "Would you have an interest in <whatever> at an approximate cost of $$$" 

Let me know how this goes

tmarz's picture
tmarz

Thanks for that. You gave me some things to think about.

bostonphotobill's picture
bostonphotobill

You should check out this class.
November 5-6, 2011 Teaching Artisan Baking, Providence, RI
Instructor: Richard Miscovich

http://www.bbga.org/PDFs/Flyer%20-%20Teaching%20Artisan%20Baking,%20Nov%205-6,%202011.pdf

tmarz's picture
tmarz

I appreciate that. One... I am all the way over in the state of Idaho, two: I don't have that much money to shell out for a class about teaching, and three: I am a teacher by trade... so teaching me how to teach is something I already know how to do. Granted they are different environments and teaching food is a bit different than teaching another standard classroom-like subject. But I know about all the things he would be showing me that I should explain (ie fermentation, ratios versus volume measure, slashing, etc). 

Now I didn't mean to sound arrogant, but I just feel it wouldn't have been as benefitial to me, especially for that price (since I have already taken classes). If it were closer to where I lived, and free, I might consider it. 

Again, Thanks for sharing it with me, its good to know those classes are out there. Maybe I took what you said the wrong way, it does give me any Idea of if I were to hold a class what I would/could do. 

 

Thanks

mimifix's picture
mimifix

Tyler, I'm not sure what you have in mind. Are you interested in putting together a cooking/baking school? Or teaching  these skills in an established location? Many years ago I held classes in my bakery on weekend afternoons when the shop was closed. I now teach baking through a NY state adult ed program; they have a HS culinary program and the kitchen can be used at night for adult clases.

There's been a great interest, especially in Yeast Bread classes. (I posted on TFL asking for ideas and suggestions.) Last year I offered 4-hour classes which filled up fast; the waiting list had enough people for another class and then the waiting list had a waiting list. This year I'm starting off with several sections.

I've also heard of people who hold classes in their home kitchens. But that adds a layer of security issues...

Mimi

tmarz's picture
tmarz

It would be just classes, no school I don't even have my own shop. I just thought of it and thought I might see what others had to say. I do like you ideas though. 

Thanks!