Ever wished you could impress that special someone with your own delicious homemade meal? Then you won’t want to miss our bi-monthly cooking classes! Bring a friend, a coworker, or even a date and join our Executive Chef, Chris Albrecht as he instructs a hands on class that are sure to impress!
All classes include a three-course dinner, inspired by the class subject, as well as collateral material. There is an optional wine pairing available for $10. Hands-on volunteers are highly encouraged!! The classes are led by Executive Chef Christopher Albrecht, with guest appearances by The Ryland Inn’s entire kitchen team, and often feature guests from the local food community. The seating is communal, first come, first served.
Starts at 7pm. $50 per guest
Not inclusive of tax & gratuity
For Reservations, please call
Make sure to ask about our frequent student cards!
January 17th Chef’s Knife Skills
Class will offer guests an opportunity to observe knife sharpening, then sharpen their own knives.There will be demonstrations of various knife cuts and how to select what knife to use. Other focus tools include thermometers and scales. Walk-through the kitchen to observe various other tools and talk with cooks.
January 31st Stocks and Sauces
We will examine the variety of stocks used in the kitchen. Learn how to select ingredients for stocks, and how to prepare and preserve them. The class will then shift into sauce making, demonstrating mother sauces, and their applications in building more complex flavor combinations, color and texture.
February 7th Chocolate
In anticipation of Valentine’s Day learn the intricacies of both sweet and savory applications of chocolate. Key points include melting and tempering chocolate, molded chocolate, differences between white, milk and dark chocolate as well as a single estate plantation chocolate tasting.
February 21st Pasta I Intro to handmade pasta (Sold Out)
This class is the first in a two-part series on handmade pasta. This class introduces techniques of rolling, cutting and folding of dough, using your hands and hand tools. Students will also mix and kneed various dough’s to understand the feel and texture of hand-made pasta. We will also explore the use of various flours and other pasta dough flavors and colors.
March 14th New Orleans
New Orleans cuisine, Cajun, Creole, and Soul Food is rich with flavor and history. Learn how to prepare some of the most iconic dishes using modern kitchen techniques. Understand the history behind the dishes and enjoy some of the most distinctive regional cuisine in the country.
March 28th Spring Garden
The Ryland Inn is proud to operate a 1/2acre kitchen garden, just 100 feet from the kitchen door. It is chef tended and is the inspiration for many of our dishes. This class focuses on all of the planning and selection of the fruits and vegetable seeds in our garden. We will share seed catalogues and discuss soil fertility and the connection between nutrient density, nutrition and flavor. We will also do some actual seeding.
April 11th Pasta II Advanced handmade pasta techniques
In this pasta class we will look at stuffed pastas and more advanced techniques of rolling and cutting. We will combine complex fillings with Intricate shapes and demonstrate various recipes for dough’s based on Italian regions and culinary history. This class will feature ample opportunity for hands-on experience.
April 25th Mushrooms
Recently there are more and more mushroom growers emerging on the scene. They have better genetics and utilize more sophisticated growing rooms and techniques. This means for chefs and consumers there are more fresh mushrooms available and in better quality than ever before. We will explore many ways to incorporate mushrooms into menus as both center of the plate or garnish. Weather they are sautéed, tempura fried, marinated or dried and ground into powder they provide loads of umami.
May 9th Beef From Far Hills, NJ to Japan
This class will explore many different cuts of beef. It will start with the presentation of a whole side of beef, to demonstrate the location of various cuts. Understand the connection between the muscle group and the flavor and tenderness therein. We will explore the subjects of Breed, Feed and Location and how they impact the quality and flavor of the meat.
Broaden your meat vocabulary and understand the differences between Kobe beef, Wagyu beef, and Black Angus as well as the USDA Grading Scale.
May 23rd Cheese
This is the second year for this class, and the response from the first year was so positive we wanted to bring it back featuring another local cheesemaker. We will taste cheese alone and in composed dishes. Understand the cheese making process and taste the difference between cow, goat, sheep, etc. milk as well as pasteurized vs unpasteurized cheeses.
June 13th Grilling Featured on our Outdoor Patio!
Wood burning grills and in particular fire, have been a part of cooking since their inception. Outdoor grilling is a flavorful, and often flashy way to prepare vegetables, meats and seafood. Learn tips on grilling techniques, starting and maintaining the fire, as well as selecting product suitable for the grill. Marinades, rubs, and cooking to temperature will all be demonstrated.
June 27th Grains
There is much attention paid to the adverse effect that today’s wheat inflicts on the consumer. So, while we know the nutritional and flavor benefits of whole grains, we have been conditioned to prefer the bleached flours (as a product of highly processed grain) to those of whole wheat grains. But wheat, is just one grain. Here we explore many other heirloom local varieties of grains, some of them wheat, that are both nutritionally dense, flavorful, and local. And oh yeah, digestible.
July 11th Garlic
After the Summer Solstice on June 21st, Garlic is two weeks from harvest. However, garlic has much more to offer than just an incredible bulb and its cloves. Learn and taste all the parts of the garlic plant as well as many methods of preparation. Once used as penicillin, this plant provides amazing flavor from all of its parts. We will focus on 4 varieties of heirloom hard neck garlic.
July 25th Pesto
In late July the heat-loving herbs are in abundance everywhere. They are packed with flavor, color and add another layer of complexity to your food. They can be medicinal, they can play a supporting roll, or they can be the star. We will focus on pesto as a technique and introduce you to many different pestos. Some simple others complex, some savory while others sweet. We will demonstrate pesto made in a food processor, with a mortar and pestle, and by hand chopping.
August 8th Saving the Seasons (ferment, canning, smoking, preservation)
When seasonal produce is at its peak availability and flavor, that is the best time to preserve it. Learn about various means of preservation from fermentation and pickling, to jellies and jams. Other ingredients that we will taste and work with include, tomatoes, peppers, stone fruits, melons and berries.
August 22nd Tomato
In the middle of March we started over 1500 tomato seeds from over 40 different varieties. Many new and exciting varieties as well as some tried and true heirloom favorites. In this class we will examine and taste many different varieties in a myriad of preparations. We will also demonstrate canning procedures for tomato sauce and whole tomatoes.
September 12th Oysters & Shellfish
By popular demand…Oysters!!! Oysters are so expressive of terroir and are celebrated for the, sometimes subtle, differences between just a few miles. Coastal proximity, water depth, water flow, all effect the flavor profile of oysters. West coast and East coast as well as Kumomoto oysters will be tasted. We will enjoy hot, cold, baked and fried preparations, each showing off the oysters texture and flavor.
September 26th Tuscany
In Tuscany, one could skip the seafood and jump right to the mouth watering vegetable, meat and game preparations that abound. But that would only be telling a portion of the story. So celebrate the best of both land and sea, where tomatoes meet mushrooms, beans are almost everywhere, and all grilled meat is served with lemon! Tuscany is considered by most as “The Gastronomic Center of Italy”
October 10th Risotto and Gnocchi
As the weather cools, hearty dishes become the norm. Both Risotto and Gnocchi lend themselves to rich flavorful preparations. The mystic of risotto and the delicate touch of rolling gnocchi will be demonstrated as well as sampled. And while there are plenty of classic preparations, we will look at some variations. Potato vs. Ricotta gnocchi. Risotto as a method for preparing other grains, etc. “in the style of risotto.” Turn your leftover risotto into Arancini, or fry some of your light as a pillow gnocchi.
October 24th Italian Desserts
There are many well known Italian desserts from cookies and tarts to frozen or fried treats. This class will feature many well known preparations demonstrated from scratch. Simple, flavorful and seasonal are hallmarks of many Italian desserts. Others are Chocolate and Hazelnut, and can be enjoyed anytime from breakfast with the morning coffee, to the last bite of the evening with grappa.
November 7th Vegetarian/Vegan
Just because the menu is vegan does not mean void of flavor or texture or unfulfilling. This class will demonstrate how a plant based diet can be loaded with flavor, color, texture and be as filling and nutritionally dense as ever. Using a wide variety of ingredients, including Whole Grains, Beans and Superfoods, you will see how flavor and texture can be combined to make exciting vegan meals.
November 21st Thanksgiving
Our Final class of the 2019 season is our favorite. Thanksgiving is a time for family celebrations, good food and conversation. Learn the secrets to a tender, juicy turkey, and how to set your menu for optimum flavor and minimal work. What can be done ahead and actually benefits from reheating. Flavorful stuffing and The Best Gravy are the finishing touches to any great thanksgiving table. Enjoy a thanksgiving preview, sights, smells, and best of all taste.