Cooking Classes in NYC

Rustico Cooking Class Calendar

Join one of our hands-on cooking classes in the heart of NYC. Just click on any class on our calendar for the full menu and to sign up!

September

October

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Gift Certificates for Cooking Classes

Celebrating a birthday , holiday, wedding, anniversary, graduation, or promotion? Whatever the occasion, give a gift certificate for a Rustico Cooking hands-on class in New York City. Your gift will be remembered long after the class is over! We’ll email you a printable copy within hours of your purchase. Complete the gift by adding a Rustico Cooking apron or The Best Pasta Sauces cookbook!

Gift certificates value - $110 or $120?

Some of our cooking classes cost $110 and others cost $120, so we offer certificates at these two values. You can purchase either; if there is a difference between the value of the certificate purchased and the class selected, the recipient can simply pay an upgrade upon reserving the class, or use the remaining balance towards aprons, cookbooks or another class...

$110 Gift Certificate & Options

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$120 Gift Certificate & Options

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Using Your Gift Certificate

Ready to use your gift certificate? It's easy! Redeem it online by clicking Redeem your gift certificate at the bottom of each class description. A new window will open, allowing you to select the class and enter your information. We process the requests manually, usually within less than 24 hours of your request, and we'll send you a confirmation by email. We’re looking forward to cooking with you!

Upgrading your Gift Certificate

Want to attend a class valued at $120, but you have a certificate valued at $110? Have a gift certificate valued at $120 but want two people to attend a class of $110? It's easy; just upgrade your gift certificate to make up the difference and you'll be all set!

Aprons

Add an apron to your gift certificate or cooking class purchase ... You or the lucky recipient will receive one of our Rustico Cooking aprons upon signing in at the class! Note that we do not ship the aprons.

The Best Pasta Sauces Cookbook

Micol's third cookbook "The Best Pasta Sauces: Favorite Regional Italian Recipes" is now out! Published in October 2014 by Ballantine Books (a division of Random House), the 256-page book is filled with gorgeous color photography, 80 recipes for regional Italian pasta sauces, fool-proof techniques, and entertaining anecdotes... It is sure to become a favorite on your cookbook shelf. You can order copies from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Indiebound, or you can purchase from us and get extra goodies! We are now offering shipping on the book and quantity discounts if you purchase 4 or more... Read on!

Purchase The Best Pasta Sauces direct from Rustico Cooking

Purchase the book direct from us and you will receive:

Limited-Time OfferPurchase 4 or more copies from us and we'll pay the shipping fees: save $8 per book and pay just $25 per book. We'll ship all the books to your address. It's like getting 4 books for the price of 3! Or even more by placing an order of 4 or more cookbooks that you can pick up at Rustico Cooking...

small orders (1-3 books)

Shipping Options

4 books or more shipped

Buy 4 or more - Free Shipping Offer

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Buy 4 or more - Pick up at Rustico & Save

You can also save on the book when bundling it with a gift certificate plus an apron, or a cooking class plus an apron. When purchasing a gift certificate or a cooking class, look at the options in the dropdown menu.

Evening in Puglia -

In Puglia, silvery olive groves alternate with golden wheat fields; stretches of glimmering coastline beckon the eye beyond every curve; plump chilies hang over doorways of white-washed houses; narrow, maze-like streets lead to sandy beaches, quiet churches, solemn castles. Join me for a brand new class that explores classic Pugliese cooking, drawing on recipes I discovered on recent visits to the area. We'll begin our Pugliese feast with an amazingly flavorful handmade pasta tossed with garlicky sausage and peppery broccoli raab. Tender morsels of chicken braised in a deeply aromatic tomato sauce are a succulent main course accompanied by roasted eggplants stuffed with herb-laced cheese and a crispy, thin-crust potato pizza (this pizza is made without yeast and the dough is unique to Puglia; once you taste it, you'll find yourself making it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner!!). Dessert is a rich chocolate-studded cheesecake that will have you sneaking back to the kitchen for seconds. You won't believe you're in New York when you taste this food.

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$110 pp | Evening in Puglia | Friday August 4, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques Learned:

An Italian Feast -

In Italy, home cooks create an amazing array of dishes drawing on regional ingredients and closely guarded family recipes. In this new class, we'll prepare five fabulous dishes that draw on the best of Italian home cooking from five distinct regions of Italy. From the mountainous reaches of the Veneto area, we'll prepare the most colorful ravioli ever, stuffed with roasted beets and cheese, sauced with a delightful poppy seed butter. From the stunning countryside of Tuscany, we'll rub a picture-perfect beef tenderloin with rosemary and garlic, roast it until it's rosy inside, and serve it in generous slices with a Chianti and leek glaze. From the Austrian-influenced towns of Trentino-Alto Adige, we'll stuff Savoy cabbage with fresh Ricotta, Pancetta, and a hint of lemon zest. From the woods of Umbria, we'll whip up a sage-scented mushroom bread pudding. And from the kitchen of my very own grandmother in central Milan, Lombardy, we'll bake a chocolate cake with a touch of cinnamon and lemon zest, a family favorite topped with a cloud of whipped Mascarpone cream.

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An Italian Feast | Friday September 8, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques learned:

Tuscan Summer Classics -

Get ready for an unbelievable taste of Tuscan food... Light, yet full of flavor, this menu will transport you to the Tuscan countryside on first bite. Our starter: an elegant marriage of herb-marinated shrimp, creamy cannellini beans, and peppery arugula spiked with olives and lemon zest; this salad is so delicious, in fact, you'll find yourself making it time and again for guests on lazy summer days. Our main course is a stunning chicken involtino (bundle in Italian) stuffed with fresh Ricotta, spinach, and Parmigiano, dredged in egg, rolled in sesame seeds for extra crunch and flavor, and baked rather than fried... just perfect with a refreshing tomato salsa accented by summer-sweet basil, a side of pillowy potato gnocchi, and some roasted string beans. For dessert, we'll whip up an addictive mousse of Mascarpone and Limoncello, topped with fresh summer berries.

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Tuscan Summer Classics | Saturday September 9, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques learned:

Tuscan Harvest Feast -

Harvest is a magical time in Italy. Nature offers a bounty of fruits and vegetables, and as the days get shorter and the autumn chill starts to descend, there's an instinctive need to cozy up in the kitchen with comforting foods that celebrate the abundance of the season. Join me for a class that pays homage to the Italian harvest and learn five of Tuscany's great countryside classics. We'll begin with one of the region's most amazing soups, a robust commingling of beans, vegetables, and bread that will leave you feeling like you had dinner at a Tuscan farmhouse (and I guarantee that when you make ribollita at home, you'll want to make a double batch just so you can warm up the leftovers the next day, in true Tuscan fashion: after all, ribollita means "boiled twice")! Our main course: tender, juicy chicken topped with a heady sauce of herbs, onions, dried porcini mushrooms, and Marsala wine. We'll make the lightest Ricotta gnocchi imaginable, and roast fennel to golden perfection under a veil of Parmigiano. And for dessert, we'll knead a sweet olive oil dough, top it with juicy grapes and sugar, and enjoy a typical autumn treat in Tuscany.

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Tuscan Harvest Feast | Friday September 15, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques learned:

Southern Italian Favorites -

These five dishes all hail from southern Italy, celebrating end-of-summer produce and its fresh, vibrant flavors. A crispy focaccia from Molise will kick off this special menu: rolled out thin, scented with crushed chilies and fennel seeds, it is absolutely addictive. Next up: homemade pasta with a Calabrese sauce featuring pork sausage, cherry tomatoes, and plenty of garlic. As a main course, we'll poach delicate branzino filets in a heady wine broth and serve them over a smooth, hauntingly flavored sweet pepper sauce. A hearty portion of roasted end-of-summer vegetables rounds out the meal, and crisp, fig-laced biscotti provide the perfect sweet bite.

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Southern Italian Favorites | Saturday September 16, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques learned:

Italian Comfort Food -

Here's the perfect menu to ease yourself into the cooler months: fresh pasta, tender chicken, herb-laced vegetables, and a decadent dessert come together in this elegant yet comforting fall dinner. We'll knead fresh pasta dough from scratch and roll it out into gossamer thin sheets, ready to be filled with Ricotta and Mozzarella cheese, shaped into plump ravioli, and sauced with basil-kissed tomatoes. As a main course, we'll slow-cook morsels of chicken with balsamic vinegar, shallots, and garlic, resulting in the most tender, aromatic chicken imaginable. We'll stuff zucchini with herbs and Parmigiano before roasting them, and add plenty of roasted garlic to our creamy mashed potatoes. For dessert, we'll bake a gluten-free hazelnut chocolate torte that is absolutely out of this world: with its crisp, macaroon-like top and dark, fudgy interior, this cake is a real keeper for easy entertaining.

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$110 pp | Italian Comfort Food | Friday September 22, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques Learned:

Neapolitan Pizza Class -

  • Make your own custom Pizza - choose from dozens of toppings, plus:
  • Classic Pizza Margherita
  • Pizza Rosa with Speck, Arugula, Truffle Oil and Mascarpone
  • Pizza Dolce with Apricot and Chocolate

Click the image below to see a short video taken during one of our Rustico Cooking pizza classes!

Click here for a participant's blog about our pizza-making class at RUSTICO...

BONUS: Take home your own pizza dough to practice after class!! I've been teaching Italian cooking for years, and the thing that seems to scare people off more than anything is working with yeast. Maybe it's the fear that, left to its own devices, yeast will take over the kitchen--just think of dough ballooning out of the oven in that episode of "I Love Lucy". But I've found that once people get their hands into the dough and get familiar with how yeast works, the fear disappears. All it takes is understanding a few rules, getting comfortable with basic techniques such as kneading and shaping the dough, and a reliable recipe. Whether you're making bread, focaccia, pizza, or any other yeast-risen dough, the principles are the same. It's all about temperature, ingredients, and technique. If you've ever wanted to bake crisp, thin-crust pizzas, this hands-on class is for you: I'll take you through the essential techniques of kneading, rolling, topping, and baking pizza dough and demystify the process of working with yeast. We'll bake Italy's most famous pizzas, starting with the classic tomato- and Mozzarella-topped Pizza Margherita, then set our imaginations free and combine various toppings for a true pizza-lover's fantasy. We'll even make a sweet pizza... delicious with a glass of sweet wine at meal's end!

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$110 | Neapolitan Pizza Class | Saturday September 23, 12PM to 2:30PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Working with yeast
  • Kneading dough
  • Shaping pizza
  • Controlling oven temperature
  • Ideal pizza topping ratios
  • Incorporating bread-making into a busy schedule

Northern Italian Classics -

  • Homemade Potato Gnocchi in Fragrant Basil Pesto
  • Roasted Filet Mignon with Fennel Seed Rub & Red Wine Glaze
  • Peas with Prosciutto & Scallions
  • Creamy Polenta with Sage & Nutmeg
  • Moist Marzipan Cakes with Whipped Cream & Bittersweet Chocolate Sauce

The northern Italian regions of Lombardy, Piedmont, and Emilia-Romagna are known for their excellent cow's milk cheeses (Parmigiano, Grana, and Mascarpone immediately spring to mind), their succulent meat dishes, their creamy risottos and polentas, their light and silky fresh pastas, and their elegant desserts. We'll start off with ethereally light potato gnocchi tossed with a fragrant basil pesto; I'll share my mom's foolproof gnocchi recipe, and you'll never find yourself buying gnocchi at the store again! We'll follow our gnocchi with tender slices of filet mignon in a rich red wine sauce, slow-cooked peas with scallions and Prosciutto, and a sage-scented polenta. We'll finish our northern Italian feast with a sumptuous marzipan cake bathed in dark chocolate sauce... a decadent finale to an equally decadent meal.

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Northern Italian Classics | Friday September 29, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Making potato gnocchi
  • Making basil pesto
  • Raosting filet mignon to perfection
  • Making a wine reduction sauce
  • Making lump-free polenta
  • Working with almond paste
  • Whipping cream
  • Making chocolate ganache
  • Garganelli with Peas, Prosciutto, & Cream
  • Garnet Yam Gnocchi in Sage Butter
  • Buckwheat Flour Tagliatelle with Caramelized Onions, Cabbage, & Fontina
  • Mixed Greens in Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Crunchy Almond Biscotti

Italians are world-famous for their pasta, and with good reason: whether it's light, ethereal egg noodles, delicate gnocchi, or rustic regional creations featuring heirloom flours, fresh pasta made the traditional Italian way rarely disappoints. And while a few recipes have won the hearts and stomachs of many, there are hundreds of other, lesser-known treasures that few gourmets have had the pleasure to taste. In this class, we'll learn to make three classic northern Italian pastas and pair each with their ideal sauce. First up: hand-shaped quills called garganelli from Emilia-Romagna, tossed with a creamy sauce studded with peas and diced Prosciutto. From Lombardy, we'll make feather-light yam gnocchi tossed with a fragrant sage sauce, and rustic buckwheat tagliatelle (called pizzoccheri) sauced with caramelized onions, cabbage, and Fontina. And to round out the meal, we'll enjoy a refreshing salad and some homemade biscotti...

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Fresh Pasta Workshop: Northern Italian Favorites | Saturday September 30, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Making fresh pasta dough with eggs and flour
  • Making yam gnocchi
  • Working with buckwheat flour
  • Using a pasta machine
  • Cutting tagliatelle
  • Shaping gnocchi
  • Shaping garganelli
  • Making sage butter
  • Caramelizing onions
  • Making biscotti
  • Caramelized Onion Focaccia
  • Light-as-Air Yam Gnocchi in Sage Butter Sauce
  • Tender Chicken Morsels with Porcini & White Wine
  • Stuffed Tomatoes with Herbed Ricotta Mousse
  • Flourless Hazelnut-Chocolate Cake with Dark Chocolate Sauce

My family has had a home in Piedmont, overlooking the Lago Maggiore, since I could barely talk. I grew up on the rich roasts, buttery pastas, creamy risottos, and cheese-laced polentas of the area; not to mention its famed chocolate desserts, sweetwater fish, and delectable farmhouse cheeses. This class explores Piedmontese cooking in all its glory, from its delectable breads and gnocchi all the way to its memorable desserts. We'll begin by making light, olive oil-kissed focaccia topped with caramelized onions; the dough is foolproof, and once you master it, you can use it to make bread, grissini, even pizza. Next, we'll make gnocchi; while potato gnocchi may be the ones you think of first, yams, pumpkin, squash, and even sweet potatoes make the perfect starting point for gnocchi: as long as you handle the dough right and follow my foolproof proportions, you'll have the lightest gnocchi imaginable. As a main course, we'll sear tender chicken cutlets and prepare a rich sauce with dried porcini mushrooms, rosemary, and white wine, three of Piedmont's signature ingredients. Roasted stuffed tomatoes are the ideal accompaniment. And for dessert, we'll bake a flourless, rich, not-too-sweet hazelnut chocolate cake; after all, Piedmont is renowned the world over for its chocolate and its hazelnuts.

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$110 | Dinner in Piedmont | Friday October 6, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Making focaccia dough
  • Caramelizing onions
  • Making yam gnocchi
  • Making sage butter sauce
  • Searing chicken
  • Cooking with dried porcini mushrooms
  • Roasting vegetables
  • Stuffing tomatoes
  • Making flourless chocolate cake
  • Making ganache
  • Cheese-Filled Focaccia from Recco
  • Cavatelli Pasta with Burst Grape Tomatoes, Arugula, & Ricotta
  • Filet Mignon with Parsley Salsa Verde
  • Tuscan Panzanella Salad (Bread, Tomatoes, & Basil)
  • The Ultimate Tiramisu

Join us for a brand new class and learn to prepare five classic dishes ideal for entertaining. First we'll knead dough for an amazing cheese-filled focaccia from Recco, a town on the Ligurian Sea famous for this delectable specialty. Next, we'll make semolina flour pasta using a foolproof recipe; we'll pair our cavatelli pasta with a sumptuous yet light roasted tomato sauce, an ideal summer sauce that can be made a few days ahead and warmed gently when ready to serve. As a main course, we'll roast an elegant filet mignon, perfect accompanied by a vibrant salsa verde and Tuscany's famous panzanella salad featuring juicy tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, olive oil-slicked bread, and fragrant basil. For dessert, we'll master the art of making the lightest, airiest tiramisu ever, always a favorite for hands-off entertaining since it can be prepared a day ahead and the flavor just gets better!

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$110 | Entertaining Italian-Style | Saturday October 7, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Working with stracchino cheese
  • Making unyeasted focaccia dough
  • Making cavatelli pasta
  • Roasting tomatoes as a sauce for pasta
  • Roasting filet mignon
  • Making an herb sauce for meat
  • Making Tuscan panzanella salad
  • Whipping cream
  • Making tiramisu
  • Spinach Linguine in Savory Leek Cream
  • Bucatini in Chili-Pancetta Sauce
  • Tuscan Penne in Walnut-Garlic Sauce
  • Orecchiette with Fresh Ricotta, Basil, and Diced Tomatoes
  • Fusilli in Spicy Fennel-Sausage Sauce
  • Conchiglie with Spicy Broccoli & Pecorino
  • Mom's Rigatoni Gratin with Gorgonzola Cream
  • Linguine in Fragrant Basil Pesto
  • Cavatelli with Tuna Sicilian-Style
  • Gemelli with Shrimp, Asparagus, and Saffron

Is there any food that lends itself more to weeknight meals and impromptu dinners with friends than pasta? Pasta is not only healthy and versatile, it takes mere minutes to cook. But many of us have a limited repertoire of pasta sauces, relying on easy stand-bys like marinara sauce or ragu. In this informative and fun class, I'll unveil the secrets of cooking pasta (no spaghetti thrown on the wall to test for doneness, please!), then show you how to pair a variety of pasta shapes (some well known, others less so) with their ideal sauce. Next, we'll cook ten flavorful, authentic Italian pastas suited to everyday eating and simple entertaining, and enjoy them family-style with some fabulous white and red wines. The 10 pasta sauces you'll learn to make in this hands-on class are sure to change the way you cook and eat on a daily basis... They've become my absolute favorites over years of cooking, and they're sure to become favorites in your kitchen too. Reserve your spots now!

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Ten Best Pasta Sauces #1 | Friday October 13, 6PM to 8:30PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Making vegetable-based pasta sauces
  • Working with fresh & canned tomatoes
  • Making pesto
  • Cooking pasta properly
  • Knowing when pasta is al dente
  • Saucing pasta correctly
  • Pairing various pasta shapes with the appropriate sauce
  • Making fresh cavatelli pasta
  • Basic Egg Pasta Dough
  • Fresh Tagliatelle
  • Three-Cheese Ravioli
  • Basil-Scented Tomato Sauce
  • Mom's Classic Two-Meat Ragu
  • Mixed Greens in Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Crunchy Almond Biscotti

This class was designed for anyone who who wants to perfect the art of making fresh pasta from scratch. You'll begin by kneading your very own egg pasta (the ratio is simple and foolproof), working alongside your class companions as you master the timeless techniques of incorporating egg into flour and working the dough into a supple and silky mass with your hands. After the dough rests, we'll roll it out into thin lasagna sheets and finish it two ways: cutting it with the aid of a pasta machine, into picture-perfect tagliatelle; and stuffing it with a luscious three-cheese filling, yielding delicate ravioli worthy of elegant entertaining. We'll also learn to prepare two classic sauces of the Italian kitchen: a light, herb-laced tomato sauce, and a delicate ragu slow-cooked with plenty of herbs and wine. We'll also learn to make crunchy, addictive almond biscotti. And after the cooking is done, we'll savor our fresh pasta paired with our homemade sauces, followed by a light green salad and our just-baked biscotti. The techniques you'll learn in this class will serve you whenever you make any type of pasta: long or short, flat or filled, from lasagne and ravioli to pappardelle and tagliatelle. Don't wait too long to sign up for this class; it's sure to sell out quickly!

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$110 | Fresh Pasta for Beginners | Saturday October 14, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Making fresh egg pasta
  • Knowing which types of flour to use for different doughs
  • Using a pasta machine
  • Cutting tagliatelle
  • Stuffing and shaping ravioli
  • Making basic tomato sauce
  • Making ragu
  • Making biscotti
  • Handmade Pasta in White Wine-Laced Seafood Sauce
  • Tender Chicken Cutlets with Artichokes, Olives, & White Wine
  • Florentine Spinach Souffle'
  • Five-Herb Risotto
  • Light & Airy Roman Cheesecake in Dark Chocolate Sauce

Italy's three most famous cities are also home to some fabulous home cooking... Florence, Venice, and Rome each boast a delectable cuisine steeped in centuries of tradition and local pride. Our menu begins with a rich, satisfying handmade pasta from Venice, tossed with plenty of fresh seafood and a generous dose of white wine. The main course is a favorite from Tuscany: morsels of boneless chicken with artichokes, wine, and herbs, served with a feather-light spinach and Parmigiano souffle' (yes, it's all about those beaten egg whites!!) and a luscious herb-laced risotto. We'll finish up with Rome's justly famous cheesecake, as light and creamy as it is easy to make. With this menu, you won't need to hop on a plane this fall to feel like you've been transported to Italy!

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Taste of Florence, Venice, & Rome | Friday October 20, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques learned:

  • Making tagliatelle pasta from scratch
  • Cooking mussels and clams
  • Making a pan sauce for chicken
  • Beating egg whites for souffle
  • Stirring risotto
  • Baking a moist Ricotta cheesecake
  • Making chocolate ganache
    • Homemade Cannelloni with Ricotta, Prosciutto, & Mozzarella
    • Chicken Cacciatora with Tomatoes, Capers, & Garlic
    • Mom's Slow-Roasted Fennel Gratin
    • Old-Fashioned Polenta with Mascarpone & Chives
    • Chocolate-Hazelnut Biscotti

    This class is one of our most popular... reserve quickly, before it sells out! Some of the most well-loved dishes in Italian cuisine are also longtime classics: Ricotta-stuffed cannelloni, chicken cacciatora, creamy, soft polenta, and crunchy nut & chocolate biscotti... In this class devoted to favorites of the Italian kitchen, we'll learn to prepare pasta dough, roll it out thin, wrap it around a delicious cheese stuffing, and bake our cannelloni under a veil of creamy bechamel sauce. As a main course, we'll brown boneless chicken in olive oil, then slow-cook it with herbs and onions in a delicate marinara sauce. We'll cook my mom's signature fennel: first blanched, then roasted with Parmigiano and olive oil to caramelized perfection. We'll make polenta using a shortcut you won't believe... no more stirring for 45 minutes (no, we're not making instant polenta: it's the real thing), and flavor it with a beguiling combination of creamy Mascarpone and delicate chives. And for dessert, we'll knead a sweet, sugary hazelnut and chocolate dough and shape it into crisp, addictive biscotti, a treat with espresso any time of day!

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    $110 pp | Essentials of Italian Cooking | Saturday October 21, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques Learned:

  • Making fresh egg pasta
  • Using a pasta machine
  • Shaping and filling cannelloni
  • Making roux
  • Making bechamel sauce
  • Making tomato sauce
  • Caramelizing vegetables
  • Making creamy polenta
  • Baking biscotti
  • Cheese Ravioli with Sweet Peas, Tomatoes, Cream, & White Wine
  • Filet Mignon in Rich Red Wine Glaze
  • Roasted String Beans with Artichokes & White Wine
  • Risotto with Prosecco, Butternut Squash, Sage, & Leeks
  • Wine-Poached Fruit over Marsala Zabaione

Cooking with wine is a common technique in Italy. From pan sauces for pasta and meat to flavorful broths for cooking fish, wine is often the backbone of most Italian dishes. This menu features wine (white, red, dry, and sweet) in every dish. We'll prepare a succulent sauce for homemade cheese-filled ravioli using white wine, tomatoes, and cream, and stir in peas at the last moment for a pleasant sweetness and touch of spring. We'll make a smooth, intensely flavored red wine reduction for our roasted filet mignon, and roast vegetables with white wine until tender. Prosecco will deglaze the pan for our butternut squash risotto, and we'll froth Marsala into a luscious cream with eggs and sugar as a topping for our wine-poached fruit.

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$110 pp | Cooking with Wine | Friday October 27, 6PM to 9PM

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Techniques Learned:

  • Cooking with wine (red, white, sweet, and dry)
  • Making fresh egg pasta
  • Shaping and stuffing ravioli
  • Making tomato sauce with wine and cream
  • Roasting filet mignon
  • Making a red wine reduction
  • Roasting vegetables
  • Making risotto
  • Poaching fruit in wine
  • Making zabaione
  • Classic Ligurian Focaccia
  • Homemade Spinach & Cheese Ravioli in Creamy Walnut Sauce
  • Roasted Sea Bass with Olives, Artichokes, & White Wine
  • Potatoes & String Beans in Basil Pesto
  • Moist Apple & Amaretto Cake with Cinnamon-Scented Whipped Cream

The Italian Riviera: Portofino, Cinque Terre, Santa Margherita, and dozens of other beautiful sun-kissed towns that dot the magical coastline of northern Italy. This is where I spent every summer of my childhood, and it is where I first experienced basil pesto at its best... not to mention the lightest, most fragrant focaccia, the most ethereal handmade pastas stuffed with wild greens, and the best gelato ever. Join me for a new class that delves into the unique cooking of this amazing region. We'll learn to bake picture-perfect, golden-hued focaccia using a trick I learned from a baker in Rapallo. We'll prepare a handmade pasta stuffed generously with fresh greens, Ricotta, and Parmigiano; the sauce is a creamy walnut and pine nut pesto. After our pasta, we'll enjoy an elegant roasted branzino (aka, Mediterraean sea bass) flavored with lemon, artichokes, white wine, and green olives; this sea bass is just delicious served alongside string beans and potatoes tossed in garlicky basil pesto. And for dessert, we'll bake a moist apple cake with a crisp amaretto topping, a specialty I first tasted in the seaside town of Camogli.

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$110 | Lunch on the Italian Riviera | Saturday October 28, 12PM to 3PM

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Techniques Learned:

  • Working with yeast
  • Kneading focaccia dough
  • Making dough for fresh egg pasta
  • Rolling out lasagna sheets
  • Stuffing ravioli
  • Making walnut sauce
  • Making pesto
  • Roasting fish
  • Perfecting the batter for moist apple cake

RUSTICO COOKING is located at 40 West 39th Street, Third floor, New York, NY 10018 - right between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, in the heart of Midtown Manhattan. When you get to the building, just press on buzzer # 3. Visits are by appointment only.

WHEN: Daytime lunch classes begin at 12 PM, (doors open at 11:45 AM) and Evening Dinner classes start at 6 PM (doors open at 5:45PM). Classes last 2.5 to 3 hours.

GETTING THERE: You can take the 4, 5, or 6 trains to Grand Central, or the F or V trains to Bryant Park-42nd Street. If you prefer the bus, take the M1, M2, M3, or M4 along Fifth and Madison Avenues, or the M6 and M7 along Sixth and Seventh Avenues. If you are coming by car, park at one of many parking lots in Midtown.

WHAT TO BRING: We supply all ingredients, tools, and, of course, recipes... Aprons are the only item NOT supplied. You can bring an apron if you like, or you can purchase a handsome embroidered apron for $20.

WHAT TO EXPECT: Class size averages 16 people. Before the class starts, finger foods and water will be available for the class participants. The instructor will give a brief introduction about the class, then participants will wash their hands and people with long hair will tie their hair back (we are extremely hygiene conscious since you will be eating the food that you are preparing!). Then everybody goes in the kitchen for the cooking portion (details on that below) which lasts about 90 minutes; At the end of the cooking, people are seated and the featured menu is served along with a taste of 2 to 3 wines.

COOKING CLASS FLOW: Classes are hands-on: participants will make everything on the menu, working together as a group. To ensure everyone learn the most important parts of a given menu, key techniques (such as making fresh pasta dough from scratch for instance) will be executed by class participants individually or in small teams of 2-3 people. Other parts of the menu may involve larger teams where individuals take turns in an activity; for instance, when making risotto in a class of 16 people, it would be impossible to have 16 risotto pans at the stove, so we would have 2 pans, and participants will take turns stirring. In order to allow class participants to spend more time focusing on the relevant techniques of a given class, washing, measuring and chopping of the majority of ingredients is done before students arrive. This way, class participants can spend a longer time mastering the trickier aspects of Italian cooking; we feel that people can more easily figure out how to measure ingredients and how to get from an onion to a chopped onion, compared to knowing the technique to make (for example) amazing gnocchi every single time - so we spend more time on these more challenging techniques.

WHAT TO WEAR: Flat shoes and comfortable clothing are required for your safety and comfort. Please avoid high heels and loose sleeves.

ONLINE PAYMENT: The easiest way to reserve a class is to pay online using the "Add to cart" buttons (quick, easy, & secure). Within 24 hrs you will get a reservation confirmation via email; we will ask for a phone number - Please note that the telephone numbers are not used for solicitation or marketing, they are only for reaching clients in the unlikely event that a class that they have signed up for needs to be rescheduled.

PAYMENT BY PHONE: You can also call 917-602-1519 and we will take a reservation. We accept VISA, MasterCard and Discover.

REDEEMING A GIFT CERTIFICATE: The easiest way is to use our online form under each class description; just fill up the required information and we will sign you up for the class of your choice unless it is sold out! You can also email us indicating the class(es) that you want to join, and the name of the person that gave you the certificate(s). We will then email you back with a reservation confirmation. You can also call 917-602-1519 in order to redeem your gift certificates.

PAYMENT BY CHECK: You can also send a check payable to RUSTICO COOKING LLC to: RUSTICO COOKING, 40 West 39th Street, 3rd floor, New York, NY, 10018. Please include a note with your name, telephone number, email address, and date of the class with your check. If you have made a check payment, please call 917-602-1519 to confirm your reservation 3 days before class.

To sign up or for further information, call 917-602-1519.

To purchase a gift certificate package, click here or call 917-602-1519.

CANCELLATION POLICY: No refunds issued, only credit. For regularly priced cooking classes: minimum 7-day advance notice. For cooking classes priced at more than $110 per person: 14-day advance notice. For groups of 4 or more: 21-day advance notice.

WINTER WEATHER CONDITIONS: The same cancellation policy applies during November through April, when snowfall and other inclement weather conditions are a possibility. We are just three blocks south of the Broadway Theater district. If Broadway shows are on, classes at Rustico Cooking are on. If you live outside of NYC and are concerned about winter weather conditions hindering your transportation to the city, we suggest selecting a Spring, Summer or Fall cooking class, as we will not be able to give you credit towards a future class with less advance notice than stated above