One-time Korean cooking class at Michaels Culinary School in Inverness.

The final result for Korean BBQ.  Definitely going to get the ingredients to make at home!
The final result for Korean BBQ. Definitely going to get the ingredients to make at home!

I have always enjoyed traveling the world and discovering new dishes and recipes. For me, this means focusing on the local cuisine and immersing myself in the local culture.

So, it made sense for me to choose a Korean cooking class as the very first cooking class I take after moving to Scotland, right?

Joking aside, it was no easy task to choose the type of food I would like to learn more about in one of the One Shot classes at Michael’s new Culinary Kitchen, which was started just eight months ago by friends and culinary enthusiasts Connor Ray and Michael Fallows.

Connor Ray is going to explain how to cook the meat.
Connor Ray is going to explain how to cook the meat.

Choose from 12 different cuisines, from burgers to Mexican, from seafood to Turkish and Thai. Italian is also available, but let’s face it, who would appreciate an Italian signing up for a class?

In any case, there were many other options, so given the opportunity to learn something completely new and very unknown to me, I chose the Korean cuisine option for the class.

And it wasn’t a bad choice: while leading the class, Connor went over some of the basics of linguistics and culture that came in handy in order to approach the dish(s) we’ll be cooking: Korean BBQ was on the menu of the day.

Make sure the marinated pork doesn't sizzle too much.
Make sure the marinated pork doesn’t sizzle too much.

For now, the school is located in an apartment in the city center, where a couple of people can roll up their sleeves and learn culinary skills. The home environment didn’t spoil the overall experience: instead, it seemed rather relaxed, and since one of the main goals of the school is to make cooking at home more comfortable, it creates a more casual and relaxing atmosphere.

Cooking banchan (light salads and pickled vegetables as a side dish).
Cooking banchan (light salads and pickled vegetables as a side dish).

The course was fun, informative and with a wide variety of techniques that can be used in different dishes.

From making delicious marinades for meats to marinating various vegetables for banchan – easy side dishes that go along with barbecue – and sizzling steaks and pork chops – everything was well explained, easy and overall quite fun.

Connor explained every step clearly and it was nice to explain how to eat Korean BBQ (using Samm which is a wrap – we used lettuce – to wrap protein, banchan and sauces) and most importantly how to taste everything. this and take food home. I was very happy to return home with a folder of recipes and notes, which will be very useful for repeating the experience at home.

In the end, the food was very tasty and I enjoyed combining different parts in different ways.

Making marinades is serious business.
Making marinades is serious business.

Another good aspect is that all classes can be tailored to suit client needs such as a vegetarian diet or allergies such as nuts and dairy. So, something that can be an option for groups with different tastes!

Currently, the school can accommodate two people each time, but the goal is to expand the facilities where groups of up to eight people can study. It will definitely be interesting to see where this takes the young duo as they seem to have some really interesting plans for a new location.

Another concept that I really like is that young people can also join teen classes so they can learn home cooking skills that can really be useful in their lives (or, why not, uncover some young culinary talents in the Highlands?)

So, if you’re looking for a few hours of fun and informative cooking at a reasonable price (single sessions cost around £53 each for three hours), I’d highly recommend giving it a try!

More information at https://www.michaelsculinaryschool.co.uk/.


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