How to Benefit from Cooking Classes to Become a Culinary Master
Culinary arts courses often many benefits for the sacrifices of time and effort. There’s a certain social status to be earned when you become a culinary master. Cooking itself is a fun activity that friends and family can do together. Learning to cook healthy meals can improve your health and save money. However, before you can enjoy any of these advantages, you need to know how to get the most out of your cooking classes.
Identify Your Skill Level and Learning Goal
To successfully learn something new, you need to choose a class where you feel comfortable with the basics and where new information is presented in that context. For example, beginners could focus on meal-planning or healthy-eating courses.
Experienced cooks may want to check out an advanced class where new techniques and challenging dishes are presented. Don’t forget there’s a variety of subjects available, such as preserving food and making your own pasta.
The best class for you depends on your skill level and your desired results.
Plan Ahead for Each Class
You’ll probably take the cooking class at a school, a Cozymeal cooking class, or another location that is not your home. Most supplies may be provided, but you can still improve your results by showing up with pen and paper for taking notes, your own apron, and maybe even a change of clothes if you tend to get messy. Some instructors may ask you to bring your own ingredients or a set of knives. Before it’s time to head out the door, make sure everything is clean and gathered together in one place.
Maintain Proper Focus on Safety
Most people agree that cooking isn’t a dangerous subject to study, but there’s still the potential for harm when using sharp knives or boiling water. Learn how to carry a knife safely (tip pointed down) and how to warn others when you’re passing behind them. Pay attention to food handling guidelines, so you don’t pass germs around your class. These safe cooking skills are vital in a packed classroom and are also valuable at home.
Speak Up and Make Mistakes
No matter what you’re learning, you are going to make mistakes. One difference between really succeeding and just barely getting by is the ability to accept your mistakes. Whether you’re learning to ride a bike or prepare a souffle, making mistakes is fundamental to learning.
Thomas J. Watson, the founder of IBM, gave the advice to “double your rate of failure” as his formula for success. If you have questions, don’t be afraid to voice them. If you don’t understand, raise your hand and ask for clarification.
Your willingness to speak up will help your classmates and may inspire them to seek help. After all, science has shown that people learn from their own mistakes and from others’ mistakes.
Remember you’ve paid good money for these classes, so don’t respond to emails or scroll through social media during class. Stay focused on discussions, participate, and keep your mind on the instructions. If there’s a demo, don’t visit with your classmate.
During practice sessions, make the best use of your time and keep your conversations focused on the day’s lesson. Don’t forget to clean up your work area before and after class.
A sticky spill can divert your attention away from your tasks every time you peel something off the counter. Cleaning up is a natural part of successful cooking anyway, so develop this habit while your learning for better results.
A cooking class is a great place to try new foods, make new friends, and learn about new cultures. This opportunity is unique from other types of classes because of the positive connections people make with food.
You may develop meaningful friendships with classmates as you share mistakes and triumphs. You may also experience personal growth as you ask questions, try new methods of cooking, and use your new techniques at home.
You May Also Like:
- 4 Ways to Love Cooking at Home
- Make Your Home the Ultimate Date Night Location
- What to Do When You Burn Yourself
Use these tips for getting the most of your cooking classes. Along the way, you may find that cooking fills a spot in your life that is personally very fulfilling.
Additionally, your new skills are sure to be a big hit with the people around you as you share the fruits of your labor. No matter where you start on the path, your journey to becoming a culinary master will be more successful when you are prepared to learn.
Have you ever taken cooking classes?
Let me know, til then–cheers m’deres!
Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist, lifestyle content creator, and editor of Whispered Inspirations. She is a proud Mom to Gabby and Michaela, and wife to Darasak. Having worked as part of a health care team for almost a decade, Nancy is happy to be back to her passion. She is a contributor to the Huffington Post, TODAY’s Parents, and an Oprah Magazine Brand Ambassador.