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Demystifying the Supermarket

at Home Cooking New York - Online

(1697)
Course Details
Price:
$10
Start Date:

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Description
Class Level: All levels
Age Requirements: 16 and older
Average Class Size: 10

Flexible Reschedule Policy: This provider has flexible, free rescheduling for any-in person workshop. Please see the cancellation policy for more details

What you'll learn in this culinary (meals) class:

Everything You Need to Know to Be the Best-Educated Grocery Shopper and Cook

Let Chef-Instructor Jennifer Clair, founder of Home Cooking New York, guide you through the supermarket, and share the all the information you need to know to make the best choices, aisle by aisle.  We will explore the meaning behind keywords like local, organic, grass-fed, pastured, GMO-free, certified humane, wild, low-fat, and extra-virgin to uncover the true story behind the foods we eat.

How to Shop in Today’s Supermarket

  1. Produce: Understand what produce is best to buy organic, based on the chemical fertilizer/pesticide load that each fruit or vegetable is subjected to. Check out this helpful chart: Dirty Dozen. Buy organic “dirty dozen” produce to cut down on your weekly synthetic chemical intake (and help support an environmentally-friendly agricultural system).
  2. GMOs: You can only avoid GMOs (genetically modified organisms) when you buy organic, which is the only certified labeling that means “non-GMO.” The US is woefully behind the times in having no GMO labeling laws, that’s to a virulent Big Food lobby, that would rather not be transparent. GMOs have a much higher chemical-residue levels because most are modified to resist heavy herbicide applications, which can be applied to the crops without damaging it. Nonetheless, the plant still absorbs it and passes that chemical dose on to you.
  3. Dairy: “Skim” milk is processed food. The fat is removed by centrifugal force and then nonfat dry milk powder (extra lactose, i.e. sugar) is added back in to make it palatable and look more like regular milk. The fat is not skimmed off the milk as might be implied. Eating low-fat or nonfat dairy is a poor way to cut calories. Something processed is always added to reduced-fat dairy products to mimic their whole milk counterpart.
  4. Eggs: Brown eggs are not healthier than white eggs. The color of the shell indicates the breed of chicken that laid the egg. Of note: blue-green Araucana chicken eggs are lovely to look at and often signify a better quality of egg, since Araucana chickens are rarely raised on large-scale factory farms and generally from a smaller operation (small farms can take much better care of their livestock).
  5. Meat: “Pasture-raised” and “grass-fed” are terms that mean something significant when it comes to the quality of the meat you are buying. It indicates that the animal roams freely and is able to have access to its own food source (in addition to being supplemented by the farmer). Animals that eat green plants (grass, weeds, seaweed/algae for wild fish), have a high concentration of omega-3s in their meat; a very good thing. The terms “cage-free,” “free-range,” and “all-natural” all mean virtually nothing these days.
  6. Sugar: The less you eat, the better. Don’t worry about naturally-occurring sugars in dairy and fruit, but make sure to check the “added sugar” line item on packages of healthy-sounding granola, flavored yogurts, and fruit juices/smoothies. 4 grams = 1 teaspoon sugar. That said, when you eat dessert, enjoy it. But don’t mistakenly eat dessert all day long, with soda, sweet cereals, and smoothies.
  7. Food labels: Read the ingredient list first. If you can buy all of the ingredients in the grocery store, chances are it’s a good food choice (i.e. you can’t buy carrageenan or dextrose or nitrites in the grocery store).
  8. Real food: Foods that don’t require a nutritional analysis (i.e. not processed or packaged) are always a good choice.
  9. Farmer’s markets: Here is what you should always buy at the farmer’s market: eggs, meat, seasonal and heirloom fruits and vegetables. There is no better place to get them.
  10. Whole grains: They take longer to digest than “simple” grains, like white flour and white rice, and keep you feeling satisfied/fuller longer. Make sure you balance your diet with some whole grains (brown rice, farro, quinoa, oats) if you find yourself enjoying a lot of white bread and rice (which is certainly enjoyable).


Remote Learning

This course is available for "remote" learning and will be available to anyone with access to an internet device with a microphone (this includes most models of computers, tablets). Classes will take place with a "Live" instructor at the date/times listed below.

Upon registration, the instructor will send along additional information about how to log-on and participate in the class.

School Notes:

You’ll receive a complete recipe packet and enjoy a full sit-down meal at the end of class with your classmates. Our classes are BYOB, and you are welcome to bring a bottle to share at the sit-down meal.

There is no sit-down meal for the following classes:

The Baking Basics

Holiday Candy Workshop

Bubbles and Truffles: Candy Making for Adults


Our classes are hands-on, coupled with demonstration-style teaching. Everyone is situated at their own cutting board/chef’s knife station around a large wooden worktable that accommodates the whole class (10 people max). We work together as a group, with the chef at the head of the table.

We focus on knife skills, preparing ingredients for cooking, and we strive to find every opportunity to offer you a hands-on experience at the stove and at your station, all within the spacial parameters of a single stove/family-style kitchen. We ask for volunteers to assist in all cooking.

Still have questions? Ask the community.

Refund Policy

We have a firm 48-hour cancellation policy to ensure that we have enough time to re-fill your seat with another student. For cancellations prior to the 48-hour mark, we are happy to offer credit for a future class. 

Non-refundable, credit only.

While it is not in our nature to say no, we are not able to offer credit/refund for last-minute illnesses or work-related conflicts. However, you are always welcome to send someone in your place, because we understand these things do happen.

Missed Class Policy

What can I do if I have to miss a class during a Boot Camp?

We understand that finding 6 consecutive weeks on your calendar to book a Boot Camp can be challenging, but because of the volume of Boot Camps we offer, we cannot offer you a make-up class if you cannot make one or more of the classes. As a consolation we have two options, for those who need to miss a class within a Boot Camp series:

1) Send a friend in your place (and make them cook you a meal based on their new skills, as repayment!), or

2) Opt for our "Plan B" program:

You are welcome to attend any of our classes that still has an open seat 48 hours before it runs. That way you can take another class and we are just filling empty seats, as opposed to giving you a seat in a future class that would otherwise have been paid for. This does require that you keep tabs on our schedule to see what is available (the number of open seats is part of every class listing)

Plan B does not have any expiration date; just be in touch with me directly when you find a class that works for you.

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Reviews of Classes at Home Cooking New York (1,697)

School: Home Cooking New York

Home Cooking New York

Founded in 2002, Home Cooking New York provides intimate and hands-on cooking classes at their cooking school in downtown New York City, as well as private classes in students’ home kitchens. Their students range from absolute beginners to amateur home cooks who want to expand their culinary education....

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