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Tag: cooking class

Best Online Vegan Cooking Classes — Plant-Based and Zero Waste

The Art of Teaching Cooking

Ever since I started teaching vegan cooking classes in 1999, I’ve loved the art behind choosing the class theme and crafting the menu, whether it’s based on:

First and foremost, of course, is the fact that everything I teach is vegan, but after that, a world of possibilities awaits! I’m inspired by different cuisines and cultures, spices and flavors, textures and techniques, but mostly what I desire is to inspire someone to get into the kitchen to create food that will nurture, nourish, and delight.

Colleen Patrick-Goudreau teaching virtual vegan cooking classes

Engaging the Senses

Cooking is a sensual experience in that all of our senses are engaged, and our experience of eating begins long before we start chewing — what a dish looks like, what the kitchen smells like, what a recipe is called, what a food sounds like during preparation or cooking, and what it feels like to touch it with our hands, our teeth, and our tongue. What memories are evoked.

I consider all of these factors when developing my recipes and crafting my classes, and the greatest gift for me is to know that one — even just one — of my recipes may become part of someone’s repertoire. That they will follow instructions I’ve carefully considered. That they will make culinary tweaks and tickles to adjust it to their liking. That they will enjoy the process as much as the result.

Online cooking classes are fun, interactive, and enjoyed globally

Join a Class in 2023

The first half of 2023 is scheduled out, and I hope you can join me. Click on each to book your spot, and enjoy a discount when you book more than one class.

𝐅𝐄𝐁𝐑𝐔𝐀𝐑𝐘: Cozy Colorful Soups ⁠(Purple Kale and White Bean Soup, Six Shades of Red Soup, Brazilian Black Bean Stew)

𝐌𝐀𝐑𝐂𝐇: Classic Northern Italian Cuisine ⁠(Saffron Risotto (Risotto alla Milanese), Homemade Gnocchi with Pesto Sauce, Polenta alla Spianatora)

𝐀𝐏𝐑𝐈𝐋: Simple Southern Italian Cuisine ⁠(Stuffed Shells with Marinara Sauce, Spaghetti with Lentil Meatballs, Eggplant Caponata)

𝐌𝐀𝐘: Homemade Tofu and Soy Milk (Save money, eliminate packaging, and increase your cooking skills!)⁠

𝐉𝐔𝐍𝐄: Plant-based Food and Wine Pairings (Join me and my partner-in-wine (i.e. my husband) for this special class in which we provide a comprehensive lesson for the best red, white, and rose wines and the plant-based foods they pair with.)⁠

If you can’t decide, remember 𝐆𝐈𝐅𝐓 𝐂𝐀𝐑𝐃𝐒 are also available!⁠

The classes are fun, interactive, and live in real-time! This means, I see you, you see all the other participants, and you see me cooking in my Oakland kitchen and answering your questions. What’s more: you receive all the recipes in advance of the class and a video recording of the class after it’s over. 

Visit JoyfulVegan.com to join a class today

What type of cooking classes or recipes are you looking for? Comment down below.

Tools for Making Homemade Tofu (Zero Waste + Vegan)

The Benefits of Making Tofu At Home

Mastering homemade tofu (well, as much as a little grasshopper can master a 2,000-year-old practice) has been my highlight of 2020. It’s all the more exciting because I failed so many times, and when I realized what was hindering my success, it was like a dam breaking. I’ve never looked back and now make tofu successfully a couple times a week. 

Is it worth making tofu at home? ABSOLUTELY! 

  • Homemade tofu is so much less expensive than store-bought
  • Homemade tofu eliminates plastic packaging (i.e. zero waste / low waste)
  • Homemade tofu tastes absolutely scrumptious!

Whether or not you join me in my upcoming live cooking class for making homemade tofu, I thought I would share with you the basic “equipment” needed to make your own tofu at home. As you’ll see, I mention a couple things you probably already have on hand, but there are some things that will be new to you. 

Tools You’ll Need for Homemade Tofu

As for the tofu mold, I prefer a wooden tofu mold, which I’ve had for years, but when I looked for one to refer you to, I found it difficult to find one that wasn’t part of a tofu-making kit. However, considering the fact that the kits provide you with everything you need, it may be worth it in the end. The two kits I recommend are:

  1. SoyaJoy Tofu Kit with Wooden Mold, Nigari, and Cheesecloth 
  2. Yamako Tofu Kit with Wooden Mold, Nigari, and Cheesecloth 

Because I wanted to ease you into the homemade tofu-making process, I also wanted to find an option for you to use a mold you may already have on hand without having to buy one just yet. While a “colander” would work (as some blogs suggest), you need more than just a colander…you need a colander/strainer that will also act as a mold (usually square but any shape will do). So, two options to consider:

  1. A plastic tupperware container you punch / drill holes into the bottom of.
  2. A small plastic basket — like those that strawberries come in. The fruit basket is actually the perfect size, and it creates / presses a pretty little design into the tofu block once it’s finished pressing. 

Cheese Cloth: Whatever mold you use, you still need a cheesecloth, though, so just purchase some at a store near you, or buy some online; here’s one I like — it’s unbleached, you can cut it into whatever size you need, and you can wash it and use it again and again and again. And I do.

Nigari: As for the nigari, as I mentioned, it can be purchased in crystal or liquid form and can be found at most Japanese or Asian grocery stores, or you can order online here (in crystal form) or here (in liquid form). FULL DISCLOSURE: I’ve used only the crystalized nigari that I dilute in water, and while it comes in a plastic bag, the amount of plastic waste you avoid using by making your own tofu makes up for it a hundred fold. (For instance, 1 pound of crystallized nigari makes about 240 pounds of tofu!) HOWEVER, I *am* curious about using liquid nigari, and since the one I recommend comes in a glass bottle, it would be even less plastic waste. I just haven’t tried it yet. What I use at the present time is nigari salts that I dissolve in water. 

Kitchen / Candy Thermometer: I mention below that this is not required, but I like to know I’m at the right temperature when adding my coagulant, so I use a simple thermometer to do so. Here is the one I have

The main thing I learned in terms of successfully making tofu was that the soy milk has to be made … from scratch. I mean…you definitely can’t use store-bought commercial soy milk and try to make tofu, but my failed attempts at making tofu also came from using soy milk I made in my favorite soy milk maker. I still use that soy milk maker just for making soy milk for daily use, but for making tofu, you have to do it without a machine.

Learn How to Make Tofu

There is a LIVE ONLINE COOKING CLASS coming up to teach you how to make tofu! REGISTER TODAY!

And let me know about your experience! I want to hear your comments and questions.

The Healing Power of Cooking

Connecting through food

“These classes have been a balm during this very difficult time,” wrote a recent cooking class student.

I couldn’t agree more. It’s been incredibly healing for me to focus on food and cooking at this time — one of the most fundamental ways we nurture ourselves and each other.

And it’s been a gift to share that with you. Thank you for creating the space and opportunity for me to do so. This past week’s pizza class saw 40 people from all around the world — from California to Florida, from the UK to Dubai! 

The recipient of this past week’s online cooking class donation was Planting Justice. They employ teams of gardeners and landscapers who plant edible permaculture gardens in the Bay Area, encouraging people to grow their own food. They teach landscaping skills to people in prison, and then after release hire them to work as gardeners and pay them a living wage.

WHAT ELSE STUDENTS ARE SAYING:

“Such a great class Colleen. What I loved about it most was coming away with a new skill. You’re a great innovator and teacher; looking forward to more learning from you soon.”

“I love Colleen’s classes. They are so much fun and interactive. Colleen’s decades of vegan cooking and entertaining come through in her classes. I always learn something new.”

“It was such an honor and a thrill to meet Colleen online. Also, even with participants from all over the world, I was able to connect with a woman from my neighboring small town of Sequim WA. This was such a wonderful surprise!”

“Fun and interactive. Can’t wait to take another class!”

“Colleen is a wonderful teacher, activist, and inspiration. I highly recommend all her books and her online cooking classes!”

“Colleen’s classes are so much fun, and I learn something new each time! You can ask questions, comment, cook alongside from your own kitchen. The recipes are fabulous that you will want to make again and again!”

“Not only are the classes fun and you get to connect with Colleen and other like-minded individuals, they take the mystique out of cooking vegan dishes and that makes it seem like something even a novice like me can do!”

Join a class today!

Fluffy Okara Pancakes

In one of my recent virtual cooking classes, I taught my students how to make homemade soy milk. As everyone learned, when the milk is done, what you’re left with at the end is okara.

Okara is the name for the soybean pulp left over when making soy milk. It has a delicious nutty flavor and can be added to smoothies, baked goods, and oatmeal — adding flavor, texture, moisture, and nutrients. It can also be used to make these delicious fluffy, oil-free, fat-free pancakes!

Ingredients
1 cup all-purpose flour 
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup nondairy milk
1/2 cup okara
Dash of salt

Directions

Add the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl, and thoroughly combine. Then add the milk and okara, and stir / whisk until thoroughly mixed into a pourable batter. 

Heat up a nonstick skillet with or without some oil or nondairy butter, and ladle some batter onto the hot pan into the size pancakes you prefer. Repeat until you use up all the batter. 

Serve with your favorite nondairy butter, syrup, and fresh fruit.

Yield: Makes about 6-8 pancakes, depending on the size

Recipe by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, Joyful Vegan, copyright 2020. Please provide credit when sharing.

Other recent posts you may be interested in:

10 Best Countertop Appliances

https://www.colleenpatrickgoudreau.com/homemade-vegan-and-zero-waste-online-cooking-class/

Online Vegan Cooking Classes Are Here to Stay!

As you know, I taught cooking classes in Oakland for over 10 years, along with classes for PCRM’s The Cancer Project (now called Food for Life) and Dr. McDougall. I stopped teaching classes because 

a) they’re an incredible amount of work

b) they’re an incredible amount of work

c) to focus on writing 

and because

d) they’re an incredible amount of work

You get the idea.

Over the last couple years, however, I’ve talked often about how much I miss teaching. I mean…I’ve never stopped teaching…in my conferences, with my books, in my lectures, and even in my regular live videos on social media. But I missed teaching cooking classes. 

Nonetheless. Whenever I thought for just a second of resuming the classes, I shivered, shook my head, and pushed it out of my mind. They just required so much time, work, and bandwidth.  

I never dreamed I’d be teaching virtual classes. Of course, none of us ever dreamed we’d be facing a deadly pandemic that would compel us to protect ourselves and each other by physically distancing from one another and staying safe in our homes. 

I’m very grateful to have the opportunity to teach cooking classes again, and while they still require a lot of work — deciding the class theme and recipes, putting the recipe packet together, creating the graphics and event page, marketing the classes, shopping, prepping, teaching, and cleaning up — the virtual online classes are so much more manageable and sustainable than when I taught in-person classes. Plus, people can join from anywhere in the world (and they do)! 

How awesome is that? 

I don’t know what the coming weeks and months will bring for any of us. We will be changed. We will be stronger. We will have lost. We will have gained. But I do know that I plan on continuing teaching for as long as you’re interested. And I do know that the classes themselves will continue to be virtual. 

Of course, there will come a day I’ll be able to speak to live audiences again, host in-person conferences again, and travel around the world with you on our vegan trips with World Vegan Travel again, but I’m 100% certain the cooking classes will remain virtual — enabling me to provide people with the tools and resources they need to eat compassionately and healthfully in a way that I can manage and in a way that you can enjoy from anywhere you live — even when this virus is abated. 

I look forward to seeing you in our upcoming classes. You can always view what’s coming here.

WHAT TYPES OF CLASSES WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE? (PLEASE COMMENT BELOW!)