Houston-Area Chefs, Restaurants & Culinary Instructors Offering Online Classes — Updated

Cuchara's cooks

Novelist Laurie Cowlin wrote, “No one who cooks, cooks alone… a cook in the kitchen is surrounded by generations of cooks past, the advice and menus of cooks present.” This is comforting wisdom as many of us find ourselves spending more time in front of the stove, some of us cooking for ourselves, others cooking for family or roommates.

As we cook during the time of stay-at-home orders, often isolated from friends and family, we don’t have to do so alone. We can consult the accumulated culinary knowledge found in cookbooks and explore the countless recipes found on the Internet. We can also cook along with chefs online.

Some chefs and restaurants have added web-based cooking classes to their basket of offerings, often making the ingredients available for takeout or delivery. Others, such as chef Brandon Silva of the forthcoming restaurant Degust, having been streaming informal live videos. Silva has usually been kicking off his social media live streams around 5 p.m., often with a drink in hand and music in the background. He chats about what he’s cooking, the techniques he’s using and more.

Meanwhile, those who were already offering online cooking classes have reported an uptick in viewers. Beaumont-based chef K.J. Bradford, who is soon producing online cooking classes for Live Free magazine, says he has noticed more viewers for his cooking live streams, as well as his older YouTube videos.

If you are looking for some virtual companionship as well as new recipes, here are a few area chefs and restaurants offering online cooking classes.

Chef of the House: Kathleen and Tate Roussel, the wife-and-husband team behind this kitchen studio, met in culinary school before deciding to share their culinary knowledge with hands-on cooking classes. That’s not possible during this crisis, so now they are offering online cooking instruction via Zoom, including classes for kids, such as how to make macaroni and cheese. To explore upcoming classes and to register, visit their calendar.

Cuchara’s Tamale Making Kit. Courtesy Photo.

Cuchara, 214 Fairview, (713) 942-0000: This Mexico City-inspired restaurant has already been offering takeout and delivery, as well as a few grocery items such as salsa kits. Now, it’s teaching a class on how to make tamales. On Saturday, April 25, tune into a Facebook live stream, or watch the video that will also be available. Sign up for class and the $25 tamale-making kit online. While you are there, you can also purchase a tamale steamer. Both the kit and steamer orders are available for pickup starting Friday, April 24.

Chef Evelyn Garcia of Kin. Photo by Trish Badger.

I’ll Have What She’s Having: This Houston-based nonprofit, which focuses on promoting women’s health with the help of chefs, is currently offering regular online cooking classes. The fifth installment is a dumpling making class with chef Evelyn Garcia of Kin, which is located in Rice Village’s Politan Row. This class takes place on Saturday, April 25 from 4:45 to 6 p.m. The cost to tune into the webinar and to have post-event access to the video is $10, but for $65 you can watch and also either pick up or order delivery of the ingredients for either vegetarian or chicken dumplings. Delivery is free within the 610 Loop; otherwise it’s $6. Meal kit pickup is between 3 and 5 p.m. on Friday, April 24 or between 9 and 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 25 at Night Heron at 1601 West Main. In addition Sarah Crowl, formerly of Coltivare, is including a special beverage, the Sage Turner, which can be mixed with spirits or wine or enjoyed on its own.

Main Course Cooking School: Helmed by chef Lawrence Fogarty, this cooking school in Spring normally hosts hands-on cooking classes and dining experiences, but during the current crisis they have pivoted to meal delivery and online classes such as the upcoming kids cooking classes and a tutorial on making kolaches. For dates and more details, visit its Facebook page and online calendar. Added 1:50 p.m., 4/24.

Smart in the Kitchen: Area food writer and culinary instructor Marcia Smart was already teaching cooking classes in her home but is now offering private online classes for individuals and groups. In addition to the videos on her site, Smart is offering a free Cocktails and Snack class on Thursday, April 30. You can register for the class and see upcoming classes here.

Spice Girl Kitchen: To celebrate the launch of her new cookbook Entice With Spice: Easy and Quick Indian Recipes for Beginners, Houston author Shubhra Ramineni is offering free cooking videos on her Instagram page and her YouTube channel.

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