Christmas Gift Week - Day 4: Cooking Classes!

For Day 4 of Christmas Gift Ideas - I have another gift idea for foodies - COOKING CLASSES! Most major cities have some place that offers cooking classes - some are a culinary studio and others have cooking classes through Community Colleges. Take a look around your city - and see what you can find. 

Here in Cincinnati - we have a number of places - but my favorite is the Glendalia Culinary Studio in Glendale. 

The Glendalia is a boutique hotel in addition to the cooking classes they offer. They have classes for beginning as well as the more intermediate at-home chef. They offer a variety of hands-on cooking classes and you have a fun time while you're at it!

Recently some friends & I took a class and made some amazing shrimp & grits. It's surprisingly simple (and full of cheese)! Lacey is here working on the scallions and seasonings...

While her husband Nate is stirring the grits. The hands-on classes are a lot of fun - they're also BYOB. So you head in and break up into teams - each team works on a recipe - with help from the staff at the Glendalia. Then after all the recipes are ready - you sit with your friends and classmates and the staff serves your diner!

Here's where you can show your culinary chops - Nathan was showing off - flipping shrimp around. It was really fun and while there were about 3 groups of people at the class - we all bonded quickly and were laughing and telling stories about our lives over dinner.

So if you have a loved one that likes to cook or wants to learn - give them a cooking class! You can even pair it with a night at the hotel and stay over. :-) If you do - make sure to tell Rachel the Food Hussy sent you. :-)

And here's the recipe for those delectable Shrimp & Grits that we made. There was not a BITE of this left after our class. We all devoured this one - wow.

Shrimp & Grits 
Recipe Courtesy of The Glendalia


4 cups water
salt & pepper
1 cup stone ground grits
3 Tablespoons butter
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 pound shrimp (21/30) peeled & deveined
6 slices bacon, chopped
4 teaspoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons parsley, chopped
1 cup scallions, thinly sliced
1 each large clove garlic, minced


Bring water to a boil. Add salt & pepper. Add grits and cook until water is absorbed, about 20-25 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter & cheese.

Rince shrimp & pat dry. Fry the bacon in a large skillet until browned; drain well. In grease, add shrimp. Cook until shrimp turn pink. Add lemon juice, chopped bacon, parsley, scallions and garlic. Saute for 3 minutes.

Spoon grits into a serving bowl. Add shrimp mixture & mix well. Serve immediately.

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