Every week, the upstairs kitchen of the LaSalle Provigo welcomes cooks of all ages to discover recipes, products and tips. With programs for all ages, there is something for everyone. The workshops are affordable and come with either a gift bag or a certificate that usually covers the costs.
The classes are as varied as the clientele. There are sessions for small kids up to six years old called Little Hands Cuisine, the tween geared Kitchen Kids and teen classes for adolescents. Adults and seniors can enjoy a range of courses from basic cooking to Black Label gourmet classes.
Although the classes for those 12 and under are more a fun way to spend a couple of hours, the courses for youth and adults are very helpful. For teenagers, the « Impressive Make-Ahead School Lunches » workshop includes recipes that will « astound their friends around the lunch table ». Easy lunchbox recipes like Chicken and Black Bean Burritos, Mediterranean Couscous Salad and Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins make lunch easy and packable.
For the family cook or home chef, the « What’s for dinner » workshops offer a cooking demonstration where the chef shares great tips, shortcuts and tricks, and even though the course is $10, the attendees learn the recipe, a grocery list and a $10 PC gift card. Most of the workshops are arranged for the cost off the session to be covered by a gift bag of ingredients or a PC gift card.
« People create relationships in here. They come here every week and you’re cooking so it’s a social activity, » says Provigo Marketing Coordinator Anita Mendes. She wears many hats, and though she enjoys the bookings, advertising and preparations, her favorite hat is that of a chef. « It is still my favorite part, running the workshops and meeting the people, » she says.
Now, with the festive season approaching, the kitchen is warming up with holiday-themed classes through to the New Year.
Christmas cookies and other delights
Over the next month and a half, each age group has the chance to get a little holiday spirit going. For the Little Hands, there is « Treats for the Holidays », where the toddlers will prepare and taste test white chocolate peppermint cookies and dipped chocolate marshmallows. The Kitchen Kids will learn how to build layered ham and cheese Cracker Snacks, puff pastry stars, reindeer-faced Sloppy Joe sliders and holiday rice crispy squares. All the kids can also enjoy a breakfast with Santa as well.
Mendes believes that the holiday season is an ideal time to get young kids and teens involved in cooking. « With all the fast food, pre-packaged and prepared foods, we need to remember how to cook proper food. It’s a life-long skill that I enjoy offering to people. The holiday classes just make it much more fun » she explains.
The next month will also offer baking classes, how to make Hanukkah sweets, workshops for holiday brunches and dinners as well as a New Year’s Eve Buffet with Montreal Chef Eleanore Salvagio.
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