Sessions are typically between 2 and 6 hours with time for coffee and lunch as appropriate. These timings will vary dependant upon the number of participants.
All the food you cook will be yours to enjoy.
Below you will find some suggested sessions ‐ a few are expanded so that you get an idea of what could be included and others that are just in list form as idea prompts for you. If something that you would like to do is not on the list, do ask as it's possible that this can be arranged for you. Scroll down to see the full list!
Please note that all sessions listed are for guidance only and details will be negotiated with you.
Click here to see a list of things that students have made!
This session will introduce two techniques that will guarantee you never fail at shortcrust pastry making again. In the session, one pastry type can be made into a savoury dish such as a quiche, the other a sweet dish such as a fruit pie.
Making pastry which is flaky and melts in the mouth is not difficult once you get the hang of it. This session will show you the tips to ensure you excel and perfect your technique. There are many uses for flaky and rough puff pastry and in the session, you will be able to choose two; sweet, savoury or both, such as sausage rolls, a roasted vegetable tart, a tarte tatin, cream slices or apple turnovers.
Ever wondered how to make pastry that surrounds the meat in a pork pie? Then this is a session for you. Once made, the pastry can be turned into meat or vegetarian pies of your choice.
Suet crust is often used for meat pies. You will make a vegetarian or non-vegetarian version of the pastry to suit your requirements and can use this to make a meat and potato or cheese and leek pie - or other fillings of your choosing.
Although it can be easy and satisfying to use, filo pastry does need to be handled carefully to get the best from it. This session will work with ready-made pastry and you can make, for example, one of the following during the session: apple strudel, individual leek and goat's cheese tarts, the Greek dessert, Baklava.
- Choux pastry - typically used for éclairs or gougéres
- Sweet pastries such as pâte sucré and pâte sablée for tarts and desserts
- Your suggestions?
This session will cover some of the basics you need to know about the science of bread baking and you will make a small loaf of bread and some bread rolls. Suitable for the absolute novice or those that want to improve their basic bread-making techniques.
If you have mastered a simple loaf, you might want to extend your skills to other possibilities or improve your technique. By negotiation, we will tailor make a session to meet your needs. Examples could include:
- Working with other flours eg. rye, wholemeal, spelt, kamut
- Flavouring doughs
- Techniques to get the best crumb and texture
- Use of sponges/preferments - poolish/biga
- Sour dough (to include either a rye or white flour culture for you to continue baking after the session)
- French breads
- Japanese style bread
- Italian breads such as ciabatta and focaccia
- Pizza dough - learning to make a dough as delicious as the topping
- Shaping doughs such as knotting, braiding and layering
Similar to making puff/flaky pastry, this session will enable you to try your hand at making dough based pastries such as croissants/pain au chocolate/pain au raisin. You will need to have grasped basic bread-making before moving on to this.
Transform your basic bread-making techniques into delicious enriched doughs such as brioche, monkey bread or panettone. You will need to have grasped basic bread-making before moving on to this.
This session will cover some of the basics you need to know about bread baking with wheat-free flours. You will make a small loaf of bread and some bread rolls. Suitable for the absolute novice or those that want to improve their basic bread-making techniques using wheat-free flours.
Mastering basic cake making: 2-hour session
This introductory session will take you through the basic skills and ingredients needed to make a Victoria sponge cake filled with jam and butter cream and the use of this simple cake batter for other applications, such as fairy cakes and flavoured cakes such as chocolate, coffee and lemon.
- Fatless sponges
- Flourless cakes
- Adapting cake recipes
- Tray bakes
- Your suggestions?
Sessions can cover simple (French style) meringue making as well as meringue based gateaux and pavlova. Sessions can also consider advanced techniques including differences between Swiss and Italian meringues and their uses.
Scones and Jam Making
Scones are challenging to make well. Maureen has been perfecting her recipes and techniques for many years and she is now happy that she has cracked it! This session will make a batch of savoury and sweet scones. To adorn the beautiful sweet scones, we will also make some fruit jam ‐ strawberry or raspberry or other fruits of your choosing. To top the savoury scones we will make some flavoured butter, such as chive or chilli.
More advanced patisserie techniques
Desserts such as:
- Mille Fueille
- Opera cake
- Your suggestions?