More a domestic disaster than a domestic goddess? We hear ya! Haute Time is no ninja in the kitchen having grown up watching Sex And The City (did you ever seen Carrie and co chained to the oven? Exactly). The thought of all that chopping and stirring sends shivers down our spine. Alas as Geoffrey Chaucer once wrote: "Time and tide wait for no man". Fast forward to 2015 and entertaining at home is en vogue. Fortunately, for those who aren't confident in the kitchen, help is at hand. Haute Time has the low-down on five cookery schools and courses that are on a mission to prove cooking can be pleasurable, healthy and - whisper it quietly - not too hard. Sign us up...
1. The Bertinet Kitchen Cookery School
French chef and baker Richard Bertinet opened The Bertinet Kitchen Cookery School in Bath back in 2005 teaching everyone from novices to experienced cooks. Richard is particularly revered, however, in the world of baking. Known for his technique of ‘working’ the dough, Richard Bertinet strives to promote the art of baking and to show how simple it can be to create fantastic bread. Richard’s four books on baking: dough, crust, pastry and Patisserie Maison have become modern baking bibles and he attracts people from all over the world to participate in his renowned bread making classes at the school. The Bertinet Kitchen Cookery School offers a range of relaxed and fun courses for food lovers of all abilities and specialist baking and bread-making courses for amateurs and professionals alike. Courses include anything from macaroons, wedding cake and pasta making to Mediterranean feasting and wine tastings to Michelin starred masterclasses with the likes of Bruno Loubet and Angela Hartnett. Courses vary in length from a day to a three or five day intensive course. Teaching groups are kept to a maximum of a group of 12. The school can also cater for bespoke events and corporate bonding or entertaining.
For more information on class availability, prices and to book, please visit: www.thebertinetkitchen.com/class/+next_availability?sort=meta_class_date_asc
2. An Evening In The Kitchen With Tony Fleming
For one night only learn to cook with highly talented chef Tony Fleming from Michelin-starred restaurant Angler. Experience this hands on culinary evening from the chefs table at Divertimenti Cookery School on Thursday 19 March. Each course will be matched with a selected wine.
From £160pp, to book visit: Divertimenti.co.uk/cookery-school
3. The ‘Epicurean Ritz’ at The Ritz London
In celebration of the re-opening of the kitchen at The Ritz London last September, The Ritz created the ultimate experience for culinary enthusiasts: Epicurean Ritz. The experience includes: two night’s accommodation at The Ritz London, an English breakfast each morning, a 30 minute tour of the newly refurbished Ritz Kitchen by executive chef, John Williams, or one of his Sous Chefs. Guests will be treated to a glass of Champagne and canapés in the kitchen before enjoying a four-course dinner in The Ritz Restaurant as well as a 30 minute cocktail lesson in the Rivoli Bar and a copy of The Ritz Book. Priced from £1,370 for two people. Please note that the programme is subject to availability and also a minimum of two participants and a maximum of 10.
The Ritz, 50 Piccadilly, W1
4. Gluten Free Masterclasses At Cantina Del Ponte
This spring, Cantina del Ponte will be hosting gluten-free cooking masterclasses, designed for those looking for information and practical support for gluten free cooking. Launching on Saturday 14 March, the course is divided into two parts, with the second session taking place on Saturday 18 April. The masterclasses will be a joint collaboration between nutritionist Stephanie Seege and Cantina del Ponte’s head chef Marco Goldin. The course includes a gluten-free lunch following each session using all the ingredients and food produced in the class.
36c Shad Thames, SE1
5. Busaba Eathai CookThai
Busaba Eathai's kitchen doors are opened on Sunday mornings to inquisitive guests at CookThai classes hosted at the Panton Street branch. Chef Hesham and wok-master Sasi share their culinary skills and insider tips during an intimate lesson, offering a behind-the-scenes glance at Busaba and learning from the best in a working Busaba kitchen. Groups are kept small to allow for one-to-one teaching, over the course of the morning our chefs talk through the interplay of flavours in Thai cuisine and teach their guests how to make three Busaba dishes, offering a variety of new cooking skills. After the food is prepared, guests are escorted to dine in the restaurant. From here, Chefs Hesh and Sasi lead a walking tour to Chinatown, where they demonstrate how to select the best ingredients so the dishes can be recreated at home. To register your interest, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
35 Panton Street, SW1