So You Wanna Be A Chef (Or Just Cook Like One)

Local culinary classes range from making doughnuts to earning degrees.


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  • Whether you’re an aspiring master chef with dreams of running your own kitchen or a food enthusiast simply looking to learn something new or sharpen a skill, there are many opportunities to learn and hone your craft. Here are just a few ideas:

 

MIREPOIX
Holiday Market’s cooking school offers hands-on classes that teach the fundamentals — and subtle nuances — of professional cooking so you can boost your confidence in the kitchen and “celebrate your inner chef.” Class offerings include Cooking 101 & Knife Skills, Vegetarian Made Easy, and Asian Fusion.
1203 S. MAIN ST., ROYAL OAK; 248-543-4390. MIREPOIXCOOKINGSCHOOL.COM.
 

SCHOOLCRAFT COLLEGE
(CONTINUING EDUCATION AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT)
With a curriculum that extends beyond the kitchen, including a guided tour of Detroit’s Eastern Market and a class on Mexico’s rich gastronomic history, Schoolcraft caters to the “foodie” who borders on “aspiring chef.” Under the guidance of Certified Master Chefs, students first learn the basics in skill development classes and then delve into more advanced topics, including courses on Outdoor Grilling, Cookie Decoration, and Salad Making.
18600 HAGGERTY RD., LIVONIA; 734-462-4426. SCHOOLCRAFT.EDU.
 

SUR LA TABLE
Sur La Table is for the adventurous foodie who’s interested in pickling their own vegetables, making fresh gnocchi, or serving their chocolate gluten-free. Hands-on courses are limited to 16 students, making for personal interactions with the kitchen’s professional teachers. The program also hosts Date Night cooking for couples.
2801 W. BIG BEAVER RD., SUITE 264, TROY; 248-283-1057; and 27500 NOVI RD., NOVI;  248-319-0025. SURLATABLE.COM.
 

GREAT LAKES CULINARY CENTER
The state-of-the-art Great Lakes Culinary Center lets professional chefs “test-drive” the latest kitchen equipment. They also offer classes led by professional chefs who teach a variety of culinary topics, including how to cook healthy dishes and bake macarons (check the website for the latest offerings). There is also a garden to teach kids about fresh produce.
24101 W. NINE MILE RD. SOUTHFIELD; 248-286-3102. GLCULINARYCENTER.COM/CLASSES.
 

BAKE! AT ZINGERMAN'S BAKEHOUSE
Ann Arbor’s Bake! offers specialized classes in which students can get elbow-deep in dough and master recipes one at a time. The renowned bakery dedicates individual, three-hour classes to baked goods such as doughnuts, baguettes, or soft pretzels. If you’re looking for a more immersive experience, Zingerman’s BAKE!-cations allow you to spend a weekend making pastries from beginning to end, crust to glaze. Other classes include Bakin’ with Bacon, Legally Magic Brownies, and Better Bagels.
3711 PLAZA DR., ANN ARBOR; 734-761-7255. BAKEWITHZING.COM.
 

SCHOOLCRAFT COLLEGE
Schoolcraft College’s culinary arts department emphasizes professionalism, providing classical training and small classes with a 16-to-1 student-to-teacher ratio. Whether your passion is for fruit ganache or competitive ice carving, you’ll find a well-rounded curriculum that includes classes such as Pastries 1 and 2, Culinary Nutrition, and Charcuterie. Students can obtain certificates in culinary arts or baking and pastry as well as an associate degree.
18600 HAGGERTY RD., LIVONIA; ; 734-462-4426. SCHOOLCRAFT.EDU.
 

OAKLAND COMMUNITY COLLEGE
In the culinary arts program at Oakland Community College, students learn the basics of the craft, including cookery, baking, food safety, sanitation, and meat cutting as well as aspects of running a restaurant that culminate in an associate degree in culinary arts (a certificate in baking and pastry is also offered). Students also gain industry know-how in regards to the financial and management aspects of cooking, and what they learn is applied to a working internship. To round out the curriculum, other courses include Indian Cuisine, Chocolate Artistry, and Nutritional Cooking.
27055 ORCHARD LAKE RD., FARMINGTON HILLS; 248-522-3700. OAKLANDCC.EDU/CULINARY.
 

DORSEY SCHOOLS
Dorsey offers a hands-on, accelerated program of 48 weeks that covers everything you’ll need to know in order to take on entry-level restaurant jobs, whether it’s line cook or baker. Externships offer real-world experience.
440 N. TELEGRAPH RD., PONTIAC; 888-422-1188. DORSEY.EDU.
 

THE ART INSTITUTE OF MICHIGAN 
The Art Institute of Michigan’s Culinary Arts program emphasizes international cuisines and teaches different cooking styles such as American regional and Classical European. Courses offered include Introduction to Baking and Pastry Techniques, World Cuisines, and Management by Menu.
28125 CABOT DRIVE, SUITE 120, NOVI; 248-675-3800. NEW.ARTINSTITUTES.EDU.
 

MACOMB COUNTY COMMUNITY COLLEGE
The Culinary Arts Program at Macomb Community College boasts a faculty of experienced chefs, including many alumni of the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in New York. Students will experience the heat of the kitchen firsthand by working in the program’s restaurant. Courses include Pastry Arts, Vegetarian Cuisine, and Culinary Skills Development.
14500 E. 12 MILE RD., WARREN; 586-445-7999. MACOMB.EDU.

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