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cooking classes in Paris

medicinejar Oct 6, 2008 02:09 PM


Looking for some help finding a cooking class in Paris. I know this has been discussed before and I have read with interest previous threads but I am still undecided.

Some background on me: I would describe myself as a reasonably accomplished home cook who can pull off some amazing dishes but, being self taught, I am occassionally unaware of some rather basic techniques too.

So on my trip to Paris I thought it would be fun to take a 1 day or half day cooking class but budget is an issue. One place I have come cross is Marguerite's Elegant Home Cooking which charges 110 Euro for a class that run 9am until 2pm. I am wondering if other's have tried it and what they thought. As well, do people know of other schools in a similar budget range?


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  1. d
    debrahealy RE: medicinejar Nov 7, 2008 07:41 AM

    I took a class with Rosabelle. She has a course called Cooking with the Countess. I think it is only bookable from here


    and she works on a lot of the basics and you can choose what you want to make. She does it at home so it was very relaxed.

    1. d
      dwagner6 RE: medicinejar Nov 9, 2008 08:58 AM

      I was looking at taking a class from Atelier des Chefs a little while ago. All classes are one-day, but vary depending on the number of dishes being produced. Plus you get to eat afterwards, of course. But what got me interested was that the prices were really reasonable.


      1. sistereurope RE: medicinejar Nov 9, 2008 04:36 PM

        Have a look at the thread below titled Cook'n With Class. Really a wonderful experience. I'm sure that Eric would cater to your specific needs...he is great and I can't recommend the class enough.

        1. RandyB RE: medicinejar Nov 22, 2008 03:53 PM

          If you speak French, I can recommend two schools. The first is Atelier des Sens, wtih two locations in Paris. http://www.atelier-des-sens.com/bouti... Their classes are oriented towards home cooks and are reasonably priced.

          My favorite, however, is l'École Lenôtre near the Grand Palais. This is a highly professional school for dedicated amateurs. You use equipment that a well-equipped American gourmet cook might have in their kitchen, but not what you`d find in the average Paris rental apartment. Classes are half day or full day, with more than half dessert oriented. http://www.lenotre.fr/ecole_lenotre/c...
          Classes are limited to 8 participants for lots of hands-on experience. There are always substantial food to take home and share.

          The photo is of me is in a pastry course at Lenôtre.

          1. medicinejar RE: medicinejar Dec 8, 2008 07:13 PM

            I ended up going with Marguerite's Elegant Home Cooking and I am glad I did it. It was a good experience, but I might describe it more as an opportunity to 1) learn about French markets and 2) an opportunity to cook in Paris. The instructor was certainly knowledgeable about the markets and was very good in introducing us to some recipes. However, I would also say that if you are an experienced home cook, you should take for those reasons.

            As I said the instructor was certainly knowledgeable but we did not spend much time on discussing techniques etc. that might inform our cooking more universally. So if you are looking for a class where you will advance your tecnique as a home chef, this is probably not the one for you. It is for you if want the experience of cooking french food at a reasonable price in Paris and you are looking for a pleasant instructor who will take you to the market and explain how French markets work and then offer instruction on recipes she has developed. She is a very pleasant person and very much into food.

            Very glad I did it and would recommend it to others who want the above.


            8 Replies
            1. re: medicinejar
              ChefJune RE: medicinejar Dec 9, 2008 08:39 AM

              If you are looking to improve your techniques, then you might want to consider the half-day classes at Le Cordon Bleu or the Ritz-Escoffier school. excellent classes, great tastings and great translations into English, if you need that.

              1. re: ChefJune
                RandyB RE: ChefJune Dec 10, 2008 07:57 AM

                Today at the École Lenôtre we learned to make a Bûche de Noël, which I like to call a Chanukah Yule Log. Chocolate-Raspberry flavor. The photo is of mine, which I got to take home. It should serve 6. I expect to make a larger one back in the US for New Year`s Eve.

                1. re: RandyB
                  ChefJune RE: RandyB Dec 10, 2008 10:02 AM

                  looks quite good, but the buches I know are all shaped like logs, with merengue mushrooms.....

                  I'm surprised the Lenotres are making them like loaf cakes.

                  1. re: ChefJune
                    RandyB RE: ChefJune Dec 10, 2008 01:27 PM

                    I was, too. Actually, they make several different styles, including this year`s Givenchy edition. The in-store ones are all round, I think, but I doubt any have merengue mushrooms or the usual brown bark trim

                    I think for the class it was easier to do the loaf style, The ingredients are the same. As it was, we went overtime in a half-day class. Even if the one we made today isn't the classic style, I like it better because it allows for more mousse and less sacher (the cake), including whole raspberries inside. This would be hard to do with a rolled bûche not crushing the berries.

                    I`ll see if I can get a photo of bûches in a Lenôtre window display and post it.

                    1. re: RandyB
                      RandyB RE: RandyB Dec 10, 2008 01:29 PM

                      No need for me to take photos. Here is the Lenôtre bûche collection:

                      1. re: RandyB
                        ChefJune RE: RandyB Dec 10, 2008 07:55 PM

                        Thanks for posting that. they're beautiful and also pricy! well, they do take a lot of work.

                        1. re: RandyB
                          Dodo RE: RandyB Jan 8, 2009 11:24 PM

                          Gaston Lenôtre passed away yesterday at the age of 88.

                        2. re: RandyB
                          txgrl99 RE: RandyB Dec 10, 2008 08:06 PM

                          Wow - your "Chanukah Yule Log" looks amazing! Thanks for sharing (although it's late, and now I'm hungry...)!

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