Culinary classes to offer tips of the trade in spring semester

INA, Ill. (Jan. 15, 2014) – A number of cooking, baking and grilling classes are scheduled for the spring semester to get the food enthusiasts out of the kitchen and learning more about culinary arts. The classes are offered through Rend Lake College’s Community and Corporate Education Department.

King Cakes for Mardi Gras could be your ticket to celebrating the southern holiday locally, and with a bit of fun. The class, taught by Instructor Beth Mandrell, will teach participants to make mini cakes and colorful cupcakes with the holiday theme. The class costs $15, plus a $7.50 supply fee. It will meet from 6 – 9 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25 in the Student Center Culinary Arts Lab on the Ina campus.

Custom Designed Specialty Cakes is a class designed to help bakers use fondant and gum paste to make unique designs. Instructor Kim Barr will teach a variety of topics, such as bows, babies, booties and more. The class is scheduled for 6-9 p.m. Tuesdays from March 18-April in the Student Center Culinary Arts Lab on the Ina campus. The cost is $60, plus a $20 supply fee.

Children can also get involved in the kitchen this semester with Me and My Buddy Cookie Decorating. Little ones and adults alike will decorate cookies with spring-themed icing and toppings to take home after the class. Instructor Mary Rice will meet students at Aunt Minnie’s Nibble & Chat in Pinckneyville from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, April 1. The class costs $10, plus a $5 supply fee.

If designing cookies isn’t enough fun, Instructor Becky Belcher will help fifth and sixth graders play with their food during the Fun Food Art class. Participants will use the plate as a canvas and food as the paint to cut and carve, slice and dice fruits and vegetables into an edible work of art. The class will meet from 10 a.m. – noon on Saturday, March 22, in Hamilton County Senior High School’s Home Economics Room. The cost of the class is $10, plus a $5 supply fee.

If outdoor cooking is your hobby, RLC has the perfect class for you. Grilling & Smoking will give participants hands-on opportunities to create, taste and evaluate a number of products created on site. Culinary Arts Chef Jeff Fairbanks will teach the one-hour class. The costs are $98 plus a supply fee of $30. Class will meet from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays from June 10 through June 26 in the Student Center Culinary Kitchen on the Ina campus.

If you prefer relaxing outdoors and sipping a glass of wine, Exploring Wines will also be offered throughout the summer. This class will look at wines from around the world, and will also include matching wine with food, tasting, purchasing, storing, serving and other areas. Participants must be 21 years of age or older. The class costs $534 and will be taught by Culinary Arts Chef Robert Wilson. Meeting times are from 2 – 6 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays from June 9 through August 1 in the Student Center, Room 110 on the Ina campus.

For the more serious students, several classes will be offered to prepare attendees for the State of Illinois exam for Management and Sanitation Training. Food Sanitation Instructor Mary Ann Kluge will help students learn about food-borne illness, procedures for cleaning and sanitizing and many more topics necessary to pass the exam, which is given at the end of the class. The cost of the class is $98, plus a $38 test fee.

The classes will meet two consecutive Saturdays from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. The first class will meet Jan. 18 and Jan. 25 in the Advanced Technology Center, Room 118 on the Ina campus. A second class will be held at the RLC Murphy-Wall Pinckneyville Campus, Room 101, on Feb. 1 and Feb. 8. A final class will meet on March 29 and April 5 in Room 354B of the RLC MarketPlace in Mt. Vernon.

A Food Sanitation Refresher course will also be offered with Instructor Kluge. This course will meet from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. one Saturday and costs $47.50. The dates and locations are as follows: Saturday, Jan. 18 in the Advanced Technology Center, Room 118; Saturday, Feb. 1 at the Pinckneyville Campus, Room 101; and Saturday, March 29 at the RLC MarketPlace, Room 354B in Mt. Vernon.

For more information, or to register, contact RLC’s Community and Corporate Education Department at 618-437-5321, Ext. 1267 or 1714.

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