Where are you located?
Our teaching kitchen is conveniently located in Hamden, CT, about 10 minutes from downtown New Haven, 3 minutes from the Merritt Parkway and 5 minutes from I-95. We also routinely do demos and classes all over the state, including the City Seed Farmers Market at Wooster Square, the Elm City Market and Delia Viking Showroom in Wallingford. Finally, we are happy to teach private parties in your kitchen for birthday parties, girls/guys night out, bachelorette parties, showers, team building events, or anything else you can think of. Give us a call at 203.288.4142 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and we can work out the details.
Are classes limited to those on your website?
Definitely not! We are happy to teach private parties at your house or ours if you gather a group of ten people or more, and we are also available for coporate events. Call for pricing, dates and available menus.
Do you offer gift certificates?
Of course! What could be a better gift for a friend, spouse or employee? Gift certificates can be purchased through our store. If you are trying to decide between buying a gift certificate and signing somebody up for a class, go with the gift certificate as classes are non-refundable and it is hard to know in advance what somebody's schedule may be.
What if the class I want to take is full?
Call us! If there is enough demand (or if you can gather a group of eight or more), we will make it happen.
What is your background?
My own background is as a journalist, but as the world of magazines and newspapers started to shrink, I turned to my other lifelong passion. I have trained at the French Culinary Institute in New York, but I am primarily a self-taught cook with over 30 years of experience, which I hope will be an inspiration to others. My own life experience shows that you don't need a culinary degree to cook truly amazing meals. Anyone can be a gourmet cook, it just takes learning time-tested skills, some patience, the right recipe, and a passion for food. We will help you with your journey.
Why the name Fig? Do you only cook with figs?
No, but we get that a lot! We love figs, but he name Fig actually comes from the names of Heide's three daughters, Francesca, Isabella and Gabrielle (in order of age, no less!). It also stands for our motto, Find your Inner Gourmet. And finally, we feel that figs perfectly represent the kind of cooking we do – they're easy to use, but like many foods, seem intimidating which we aim to change. Once you spread a baguette with dolce gorgonzola and a little bit of fig jam (try it!) you'll never serve chips and salsa at another dinner party. So there are many meanings behind Fig, and we find more and more every day.
What can I expect from a Fig class?
We have designed each class to be hands on, and relevant to cooks of all levels, but your fig experience will depend on how much you want to participate. If you prefer to sit and watch the class, we have seats perfect for observation. On the other hand, if you want to get fully involved, we have a cutting board waiting for you at the work table. And of course, there is room for everybody in between. There is no worry of grades or getting a degree - our goal is to teach you in a relaxed, stress free environment. There is no fear of being judged, and there is no need to take notes, since we will send you home with detailed recipes and shopping lists. You will learn cooking techniques, the art of choosing a recipe, the ability to adjust a recipe to your own needs, and the skills to fix a recipe if something goes wrong. At the end of the class there will be time for questions and we will sit down together to try all of the foods we have prepared.
How does Fig give back to the community?
With so many food-related issues facing our nation right now – obesity on one end of the spectrum and hunger on the other – we want to make sure we are doing whatever we can to help. We are the only business in New Haven currently involved in First Lady Michelle Obama's important Chefs Move to Schools program, and Since Fall, 2011, we have been working closely with Cheryl Barbara at High School in the Community to bring nutritious and flavorful recipes to liven up school lunches. Many students at this school are malnourished, school lunch being the only meal they get each day, so we work with Chef Cheryl to make sure every bite counts. We also work with Share our Strength by hosting a yearly table at Taste of the Nation, New Haven, and teach free monthly cooking classes at the Wooster Square Farmer's Market to teach customers flavorful and affordable uses for seasonal produce. And of course, we don't like to limit ourselves to food-related causes, so we donate many gift certificates to local charity auctions and host tables at fundraisers like Cooking for C.A.S.A., a fundraiser for children in foster care.