From Spanish paella to sous vide salmon: sharpen your knives, develop a dish and snack a bit while you’re at it

Master the art of sous vide salmon at one of Bold Food’s high-tech, science-based cooking classes. (Image via the Bold Food Website)

Think of it like this—in one capacity or another you're going to be making meals every day for the rest of your life, so why not get good at it?

And no, you don't need to be an Insta-obsessed foodie or restaurant regular to want to improve the quality of your cooking. Here on the Peninsula, there are ample opportunities for not only progressing your palette, but also cultivating your kitchen skills via a variety of different cooking classes and workshops.

Want to flaunt flawless fried chicken or perfect a summer paella? Or better yet learn the delicious nuances of making your own artisan chocolate? If so, we've mapped out the best opportunities for culinary classes around the 6-5-0 area code.

So get an apron on, find your flavor and meet some people in the process.

A small sampling of the delicious dishes you can be making at one of Sur La Table’s many cooking classes in Palo Alto: (clockwise from top left) Secrets of Summer Paella; Fried Chicken 101; Thai Street Food; Dining in French Style. (Images via the Sur La Table website)

Sur la Table

From Vietnamese Street Food to Croissants From Scratch, there’s no shortage of variety in Sur la Table’s jam-packed calendar of cooking classes. Besides their usual opportunities open to all, Sur la Table also offers classes designed specifically as activities for couples and families. Need to keep those kids busy this summer? Enroll them in a week-long, themed cooking series for children and teens.

The Peninsula’s Sur la Table classes are held in Palo Alto, with prices ranging from $25 to $75 per session. Discounts often surface, so be sure to keep an eye out!

Sur la Table // 855 El Camino Real #57, Palo Alto (650) 289–0019

Develop modern technique for modern cuisine with specialized classes at Bold Food. (Images via the Bold Food Instagram)

Bold Food

If you’re interested in delving beyond your average, run-of-the-flour-mill cooking class, you’re likely to find what you’re looking for at Bold Food. Utilizing science-based modernist techniques in a “high-tech garage kitchen,” Muffie Fulton’s Los Altos-based establishment teaches cooking with a twist. Vacuum technology, immersion circulators, CVap ovens — all are fair game, so expect to be immersed in some unfamiliar territory.

Classes are specialized and highly focused to a particular topic, such as Modern Vegan Cuisine and Sous Vide Cooking. At around $165 per four-hour class, rest assured that you’re signing up for an experience you‘ll be hard-pressed to find elsewhere.

Bold Food // 2310 Homestead Rd Set C1 406, Los Altos (888) 884–5702

From savory to sweet: a variety of edible options with CozyMeal. (Images via the Cozymeal website)

Cozymeal

Some days are just meant for staying in. With Cozymeal, you have the option of staying home and having a chef commute to you. As a website that pairs local consumers to professional chefs, Cozymeal offers cooking classes, food tours and culinary team building events. Location is all up to you — either choose the chef’s location (ranging from event spaces to private homes) or simply have them come to you.

With cuisines ranging from local to international—be it California Fresh or Classic Indian Vegetarian—there’s no need to worry about finding your perfect class. Classes in the area range around $100.

Cozymeal // www.cozymeal.com

Cooking with Draeger’s: (left to right) Learning the fine art of gnocchi-making; a Sicilian tapas spread. (Images via Draeger’s Cooking School Instagram)

Draeger’s Cooking School

Save some time and gas by getting both your groceries and some culinary guidance at the same place. With Peninsula locations in both Menlo Park and San Mateo, specialty grocery store Draeger’s offers cooking classes taught by guest chefs and staff instructors ranging from industry insiders, cookbook authors and globe-traveling experts.

Whether you want to go back to the basics and refresh your knife skills or learn how to entertain with the perfect summer brunch, Draeger’s has you covered. Prices range from $60 to $125 per person.

Draeger’s Cooking School // 1010 University Drive, Menlo Park (650) 324–7700 // 222 East Fourth Avenue, San Mateo (650) 685–3700

Clockwise from top left: The delectable results of a bonbon making class; the fine art of caramel making; learn how to make homemade candy apples; fresh dark chocolate covered caramels with Spanish sea salt. (Images via the Timothy Adams Chocolates Instagram)

Timothy Adams Chocolates

Sweet tooths (teeth?) and chocolate fiends rejoice. At Timothy Adams Chocolates, you can reserve a two-hour workshop on chocolate bonbon-making. In addition to being guided on crafting three different chocolates from scratch, you’ll also be treated to a chocolate tasting and a light buffet of tea sandwiches, fruit and local artisan cheeses.

Workshops for groups of three or less are available on Saturday at noon, while larger groups can pick their own window of time. Classes start at $75 per person.

Timothy Adams Chocolates // 539 Bryant St, Palo Alto (415) 755–8923

Stay up to date with other coverage from The Six Fifty by subscribing to our weekly newsletter, featuring event listings, reviews and articles showcasing the best that the Peninsula has to offer. Sign up here!

More from The Six Fifty:

Geek out and improve your cooking today with Bold Food’s owner, Muffie Fulton

Plant-based Peninsula: the Six Fifty’s guide to vegan & vegetarian eats around Silicon Valley

Japan’s Ramen Nagi arrives to elevate Palo Alto’s noodle game

Fruit Loop donuts and Double Doubles: Our gluttonous guide to late-night eats on the Peninsula

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