Cooking Classes for Beginners to Experts Offered at Cooks of Crocus Hill Edina, Williams-Sonoma Galleria, and Kitchen Window

Culinary classes for beginners to experts.
Mary O’Toole instructs students Bryce Havens, Beverly Aubol, Sue Abalan, Linda Blume, and Catherine Katt at Cooks of Crocus Hill.

With Edina Community Education cooking classes disrupted this fall due to construction and renovation of facilities, what’s a culinary hopeful to do? Fear not. Excellent learning opportunities abound for wannabes as well as experienced chefs.

Cooks of Crocus Hill

Located on West 50th Street, Cooks has offered cooking classes since they opened 15 years ago, says Karl Benson, who now owns the shop with his wife, Marie Dwyer. Classes are available for beginner to expert students, starting with How to Boil Water and Knife Skills, progressing to intermediate Date-Night, Mastering Seafood and Sushi 101 classes.

“For those with full comfort in the kitchen,” Benson says, “we offer experiences with who’s who in the cooking world, from Marcus Samuelsson to Raghavn Iyer to Thomas Keller. If they are on tour,” he adds, “they are probably visiting Cooks.” Popular classes include Kids Cook Camps, Scotch and Steak, Mastering Sauces and Time to Bar-B-Que. Classes include a great evening, recipes that work, engaging instructors who know their stuff, a taste of everything that’s prepared, and even a glass of wine.

Classes are always changing to keep things fresh and relevant. Some possible October class offerings:

October 4: Knife Skills with Tracy Figueroa; 6-8 p.m.

October 9: Mediterranean Cooking for the Jewish High Holidays with Zehorit Heilicher; 2–4:30 p.m. (demonstration).

October 22: Molly Yeh, food blogger and author of Molly on the Range: Recipes and Stories from an Unlikely Life on a Farm; 1-3 p.m. (demonstration)

October 30: Kids Cook: Halloween Spooktacular with Cynthia Maxwell; 12-2:30 p.m. (participation)

For additional information and to register, go to the website and click on “Take a Class.”

Williams-Sonoma

Located in the Galleria, this store offers what culinary expert Hana Horns calls “tech classes,” one or two of which are scheduled for October (as they are each month). These classes are fairly casual, she says, occur around the in-store cooktop, may or may not involve participants’ hands-on activity and are free. “One of our chefs or seasonal cooks usually prepares two to three dishes. They say, ‘Here are the ingredients. We use these tools.’ ” Similar classes, also once or twice a month, are offered for young chefs. “When kids are involved in food preparation, when they have fun cooking, they tend to eat better,” says Horns. A popular subset of children’s classes are Williams-Sonoma’s American Girl cooking classes. These are fee-based, hands-on sessions.For information about all in-store classes, call the Galleria Williams-Sonoma at 952.285.1338, or check out their Facebook page and Instagram account, @wsedina. Horns adds that Williams-Sonoma Galleria also offers customized, event-centered cooking classes (think Ladies’ Night Out or wedding shower), in-store or in your home. Prices vary; call for additional information.

Kitchen Window

A third option is to venture just northeast of Edina to Hennepin Avenue in Uptown. Kitchen Window offers cooking classes in two kitchens and on a patio where grilling classes are hosted year-round. Offerings like Fundamentals of Cooking and Cooking Basics are designed to introduce beginners to cooking, says Susan Wiesner Lund, assistant culinary director. More advanced classes are available to help experienced cooks expand their culinary repertoire, and may feature instructors like Ryan Lund, who was executive chef of Lucia’s Restaurant and Wine Bar for six years. A special feature of Kitchen Window’s wedding registry includes two complimentary vouchers for classes in their cooking school.

For more information or to view the current class schedule online, e-mail [email protected] or contact Kitchen Window at 612.824.4417.