• Rachael Pitman

A sweet day at cookery school


Set in the beautiful grounds of The Chewton Glen in the New Forest is The Kitchen. As a foodie I would recommend it, not only for the restaurant that provides a more casual feel than the The Chewton Glen itself, but also for the cookery classes that are organised with such precision.

A couple of weeks ago I signed up for the Seasonal bakes and sweet treats course, which certainly made me popular with my husband who has an incredible sweet tooth. The day starts informally with a coffee and delicious cinnamon buns, that had apparently had been baked at one in the morning.

A chance to chat with the other class members followed by an intro from chef tutor Rob Cottam, we all had our own iPads with the recipes and different animal print aprons (mine was a pig).

The teaching space has been expertly laid out with the latest Gaggenau equipment, unlike my own kitchen hot pans can go directly on it and even cutting on it won’t mark the surface. A maximum of twelve can attend the class enabling everyone to have their own workstation laid out to perfection. Each drawer and cupboard is checked regularly to make sure the items are where they should be.

I would love someone to come and organise my kitchen in that way, then perhaps I wouldn’t waste so much time searching for things.

Chef tutor Rob demonstrates the dishes on the main workstation, explaining as he goes along with a healthy mix of banter to keep us entertained, the use of cameras and the screens angled behind the chef, were particularly useful to see what was happening in the chefs pans.

The great thing about these courses is it’s pretty difficult to go wrong (famous last words) as a couple of the kitchen team members weigh out your ingredients and place them along with any weapons you might need on your workstation. This really does take the pressure off and all you need to concentrate on is the method.

Halfway through the day we stopped for lunch in the restaurant with several varieties of pizzas to share and two different salads washed down with a glass of Danebury English regional wine.

I really enjoyed the whole day and have learnt how to do some bakes that I will definitely be making again, so thanks Rob for that. Here is some photos they all tasted amazing even if I do say so myself.

Apple, pecan and maple jalousie

Salted Caramel profiteroles

Date and orange loaf cake

In the lead up to Christmas there are a range of courses available it includes parent and child classes, great to get the kids involved in the preparations. Also, if you fancy making some edible gifts to give away this year there is something for you too.

The list for the remainder of this year is below:

Bake with Me at Christmas (Adult and Child) - £45 per child

o Saturday 2nd December 9.30-12.00

o Saturday 16th December 9.30-12.00

Christmas Drinks & Nibbles (Half Day) - £85 per person

o Saturday 9th December 2.00-4.30

o Saturday 16th December 2.00-4.30

o Tuesday 19th December 2-4.30

Christmas Bakes (Full Day including lunch) - £155 per person

o Thursday 14th December 9.30-3.30

Edible Christmas Gifts for Hampers & Stockings

(Full Day including lunch) - £155 per person

o Wednesday 20th December 9.30-3.30

Junior & Teen Chef Christmas Bakes (Ages 8-17) - £45 per child

o Friday 22nd December 9.30-12.00 and 2.00-4.30

o Saturday 23rd December 9.30-12.00 and 2.00-4.30

New courses are added regularly and personally I think one would make a great gift for that person that has everything and would appreciate an experience to be chosen at their convenience.

There are even some dates to cook with the fabulous James Martin.

More details for classes into the new year can be found on www.chewtonglen.com

#Cinnamonbuns #restaurant #ChefRobCottam #TheKitchen #JamesMartin #LukeMatthews #Homemadechocolate #Pizza #Cookeryclasses #Celebritychef #jalousie #SaltedCaramelProfiteroles #Dateandorangeloafcake #ChewtonGlen #IconicLuxuryHotels #NewForest

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