HomeThese cooking classes will take you around the world without ever leaving Long Island

These cooking classes will take you around the world without ever leaving Long Island

Identify ways to spice up your cooking? Classes that take advantage of the cuisines of different cultures on Long Island will enhance your culinary skills and your culinary skills. The dishes will tickle your taste buds as they celebrate flavors and carry over to Latin American, Middle Eastern, Asian, Mediterranean and UK favourites.

“My passion has always been to understand the culture related to food,” says Donna Sesto, owner of Babylon Mercantile, which features a retail marketplace and cooking classes for adults and children. “Our philosophy is that we don’t just teach a recipe. Our teachers will help you understand where that recipe came from.”

And for fun: One lesson in the upcoming Sicilian chapter series on pasta and seafood in December could be called “Squid Games.” In January, there is a season of charred octopus.

You don’t need a passport for this kind of delicious round-the-world trip, but an apron will come in handy for these multicultural personal classes being introduced in the coming weeks. They all follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s safety guidelines for class capacity and social distancing.

Where will GPS take your meal?

The Mediterranean via Babylon Mercantile

What is cooking? Spicy stuffed calamari, or as they say in Italy calamari ribini. After boiling in spicy tomato sauce, soft squid is stuffed with tentacle cubes, pepper crumbs and herbs.

Culinary method: “It’s a fun class, really different,” says Sesto, whose parents are from Italy. “Next to my mother are fishermen. Next to my father are olive groves in Sicily. Squid picks up the flavors of everything else you put in it.”

the secret of success: It’s all about the timing, temperature and acidity of the roast.

Class details: December 21, 6-9 p.m., Babylon Mercantile, 45 E. Main St. , Babylon; babylonmercantile.com, 631-818-1100, $115 per person.

Latin America via Cooking Lab

What is cooking? empanadas

Culinary method: How to make crusty dough and delicious fillings – one meat, vegan – from scratch, as well as how to stuff, shape and bake. Also prepare chimichurri sauce for dipping.

the secret of success: “Don’t overwork the dough,” says co-owner Michele Capobianco, adding that cumin and cinnamon are key spices.

Class details: December 4 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.; 160 Main Street, Port Washington, thecookinglabpw.com, 516-570-0050; $85 per person.

Middle East via Apron Masters Kitchen

What is cooking? Shakshuka

Culinary method: How to make sunny-side up eggs in a spicy tomato-based red sauce and spinach-based green sauce, plus pita dough for baking from scratch.

the secret of success: Don’t overcook the eggs, according to co-owners Roy Mordechai and Sharona Foreman. “Traditionally, eggs cook well, but we prefer our soft-yolked version,” he says.

Class details: A two-and-a-half hour class of 12 (minimum) by arrangement; 956 Broadway, Woodmere; apronmasters.com, 516-569-2665, $110 per person.

Asia via Cook’s Studio

What is cooking? Chinese dumplings

Culinary method: How to make dough for wrappers and two fillings – one pork and one vegetable – as well as how to stuff, seal and cook by steaming and frying. It will also make a delicious dipping sauce.

the secret of success: Practice, practice, practice. “The first dumplings or everyone’s first dumplings are a bit ugly,” says owner Victor McNulty. After a few tries, you’ll get them out. And if not, he says not to worry: ‘Ugly dumplings taste just like beauty,’ he confirms.

Class details: December 26, noon to 2pm and 5-7pm, Cook Studio, 156a Engineers Dr. , Hicksville; thecooksstudio.com, 516-439-1355, $85 per person.

United Kingdom via Baking Coach

What is cooking? Scones, traditionally associated with Scotland, Ireland and England.

Culinary method: How to make apple and cranberry muffins and lemon and cranberry muffins, as well as other types of breakfast, from scratch.

the secret of success: Treat the dough gently, says owner Lisa Pasini. “The perfect cake is crunchy on the outside and flaky on the inside. It’s perfect for tea time.”

Class details: December 22, 7-8:30 p.m.; 320 Broadway Road – Greenlon, Huntington; bakingcoach.com, 631-543-8608, $85 per person.

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