Many Brits have spent their five months in lockdown picking up new skills, with thousands taking to the kitchen to perfect a dish or two.
And now a new service has launched offering interactive online classes taught by Michelin starred chefs and other food experts to help people cook along and make restaurant quality dishes at home.
The Knowledge Recycled Zoom classes, which start at just £9, are fronted by an all-star line up of those at the top of the food and drink industry, including Tom Anglesea, the Head Chef at The Laughing Heart, and Great British Menu winner Lee Westcott, a Michelin star chef.
The new venture was the lockdown project of Julia Kemp, who set up Knowledge Recycled after moving back to her native UK from San Francisco, where she was working as growth marketing consultant.
The Knowledge Recycled Zoom classes, which start from just £9, are fronted by an all-star line up of those at the top of the food and drink industry. The new venture was the lockdown project of Julia Kemp (pictured), who set up Knowledge Recycled after moving back to her native UK from San Francisco
Some of the classes are one offs, while others are run as a ‘series’; for example, Shaun Presland, a top sushi chef who runs pacific in Mayfair, is going through Japanese cuisine.
Meanwhile while James Cochran, who made his name at two-Michelin starred The Ledbury, is helping people cook ‘Michelin star’ dishes, starting with knife skills and progressing to sauces and foams.
All ingredients and equipment needed for the class are shown on the website when purchasing a ticket.
Those taking part will need to purchase the ingredients in advance of the class to participate, but it isn’t compulsory to cook along, and some just watch.
All experts have carefully selected affordable and accessible ingredients that are available in most supermarkets.
No later than 72 hours before the start of the class, participants are provided with any more information about the class and the relevant Zoom link.
Which experts have signed up to Knowledge Recycled classes – and what are their top cooking tips?
Sarah Mountain: Executive Pastry Chef at The Ned Hotel
Featured in Elite Traveller as one of the top 14 female chefs in the UK
Sarah Mountain, executive pastry chef at The Ned Hotel, told Femail to always soften butter before creaming when making desserts
TOP TIP: ‘When making pastry always soften your butter first before creaming. This ensures that the eggs won’t split when you are adding them to the mix.
‘When making chocolate, make sure that when you temper the chocolate you use an infrared temperature probe as this is the key to precision.’
James Cochran: Owner of 12:51 restaurant
Trained at The Ledbury (2 Michelin stars) and winner of Great British Menu as ‘Champion of Champions’
TOP TIP: ‘Make sure that you have a sharp set of knives and understand basic knife skills. Taste, taste, taste so you understand your palate for seasoning.’
James Cochran: Owner of 12:51 restaurant, told Femail: ‘Make sure that you have a sharp set of knives and understand basic knife skills. Taste, taste, taste so you understand your palate for seasoning’
Monisha Bharadwaji: Award winning author and Indian chef
Monisha Bharadwaji: Award winning author and Indian chef told Femail it’s best to balance flavours by not adding too much of one spice
TOP TIP: ‘Make sure to add the right amount of ground spices to a curry – usually, one teaspoon each of a few spices is enough.
‘To balance the flavours, add the right amount of salt as low seasoning will make the curry underwhelming.
‘When using fresh chillies, leave the seeds in. If you want a milder dish, use fewer chillies!’
Tom Anglesea: Head Chef at The Laughing Heart and Great British Menu winner
TOP TIP: ‘I use a foil lining and sugar filling to “blind-bake” the tart shell before filling it to get that perfect 90-degree tart edge!’
Tom Anglesea: Head Chef at The Laughing Heart and Great British Menu winner is taking part
Tom Dyer – World Champion Flair Bartender and 12-time UK Flair Bartending Champion
Tom Dyer – World Champion Flair Bartender and 12-time UK Flair Bartending Champion is also on the list of experts offering classes
TOM’S TOP TIPS FOR BARTENDING
‘If you don’t have professional bar equipment, you can use kitchen tools to make great drinks. A large jar acts as a great shaker, a sieve as a strainer and a rolling pin as a muddler.
‘Ice is the secret ingredient to most cocktails. Don’t be scared to use it, make sure you have more than you think you need and make sure that it is COLD. Use it straight from the freezer and don’t let it melt or get wet as it will dilute your drink too much.
‘A great cocktail is all about pairing flavours and getting the correct balance. Just like cooking, always try and follow a recipe and try and recreate flavour combinations you already know.’
Shaun Presland: Sushi chef at Pacific in Mayfair
TOP TIP: ‘Sushi is best served as freshly made as possible with the temperature of rice being at 38C. Never ever put in the fridge because the rice will harden and taste terrible.’
Shaun Presland: Sushi chef at pacific in Mayfair, is offering classes on fish and sushi making skills
Other chefs taking part in the classes
- Will Carvalho – Michelin-trained performance chef for the Gloucester Rugby team
- Noemie Favrat – Sommelier at Mandarin Oriental and second runner up in 2018 & 2019 for Best UK Sommelier Award
- Lee Westcott – Michelin star chef who spent three years as the Head Chef at Tom Aikens’ restaurant. Appeared on Great British Menu in 2015.
- Josh Katz – Owner of Berber & Q restaurant, has appeared as a guest chef on both Sunday Brunch and Saturday Kitchen numerous times.