In addition to classes at their main location in Frog Hollow, Billings Forge Community Works has begun to hold classes in the kitchen for the Cafe at the Hartford Public Library, with the added bonus that HPL cardholders get a discount on class registration.
The current list of classes includes health-related topics such as "Foods that Fight," offering information about which foods offer a stress-free and calming life, and "Gluten Free, It's the New Me!" - both in the Second Floor Kitchen Program Space at the Hartford Public Library. Classes in The Kitchen at Billings Forge include "Tapas and Tapatinis", a "Mexican Fiesta", kid-popular "Pretzel Making" and "Cupcake Decorating" workshops, and their ever-popular "Pierogi Workshop" at the end of the summer. Learn what to do with the "First Flavors of Summer" including strawberries, green beans, yellow squash, radishes, fennel, arugula and other items from their weekly Farmer's Market. The "Fins and Scales" class will offer new ways to prepare seafood, including grilled calamari salad, fish and chips (local beer battered haddock and hand cut French fries), baked sole stuffed with jack cheese, kale and pine nuts, and cornmeal crusted, pan seared cod with pineapple salsa, black beans and rice.
One exception is the "BATTLE NIGHT!" which accepts sixteen students in an unusual and reality-TV-inspired competition. They ask "What would you do with a 'mystery basket' full of fresh produce, meat, and cheese directly from our market?" One basket is provided to each of two or more teams that have 20-30 minutes to brainstorm with two chef mentors after reviewing the contents of their basket. The chef-mentor will guide each team with strategies, techniques, presentation, and ideas for time management for multi-tasking. Once the cooking is done, platters ready for presentation will be shared by the group, along with a sampling of local beers and wines.
Classes change seasonally, and you can schedule a class for a group as a team-building exercise, birthday party, other celebration, or just to have fun with a group of friends.