Conquer culinary cold feet at 29 Cooks

Upper Milford Township catering and culinary center offers classes for all skill levels.

29 Cooks focuses on catering and experience-based cooking class

Whether you're a seasoned chef serving gourmet meals or a struggling chef throwing away burnt eggs and toast, 29 Cooks in Upper Milford Township is here to help.

The catering and culinary center, which opened April 22, is for all skill levels — from modern-day Julia Childs and aspiring Emeril Lagasses to titans of takeout and masters of the microwave.

"Everyone has something to learn here," said Cindie Feldman, who co-owns 29 Cooks with her husband, Kevin. "And for the people who say, 'I can't learn or I can't cook,' I say to them, 'Of course you can! You just lost your confidence — or you hate to do dishes.'"

The 4030 Chestnut St. business, in the Chestnut Court strip mall between Hess and Yocco's, offers both public and private experience-based cooking classes.

Boasting a convection oven, movable range, 10-foot butcher block and a host of other culinary equipment, the 2,100-square-foot facility is an ideal setting for chefs and chefs in training.

Participants watch demonstrations, receive one-on-one instruction and apply their newly learned skills to collaborative dishes.

The classes, which accommodate up to 20 participants, are perfect for bridal parties, book clubs and "any group looking to have fun," said Feldman, who says "making people happy with food" is one of her biggest passions.

Upcoming public classes include "Girls, Girls, Girls," where ladies learn how to make foods such as honey crunch chicken breast with warm caramelized bacon kale; "Date Night," where couples work together to create dishes such as jerk shrimp pasta alfredo and chocolate ganache fondue; and "A Man with No Plan," where men learn how to take their "grill skills into this century."

Classes, $50 to $75, are BYOB and mocktails and mixers are provided.

The Feldmans are especially excited to offer a junior culinary camp for children, ages 7-11, this summer.

The program will feature six weeklong sessions, including "Ocean Waves," where students learn how to make foods from Jamaica, Puerto Rico and other beach havens; and "Made in the USA," where students explore culinary traditions from different parts of the country.

Each session is $325, except for a session devoted to students with gluten or nut allergies ($375).

From 2006 to 2008, the Feldmans operated Emmaus' Café 29, which they closed to devote more time to their sons — Marc, 19, and Nick, 21. Both will help out at the center when they return from college in a couple of weeks.

The couple's new venture also includes full-service catering where a customizable menu of freshly prepared foods can be brought to your home or any off-site location.

Customers can choose from a wide selection of specialty hors d'oeuvres, soups, salads, sides, wraps, sandwiches, pastas, entrees, desserts, drinks and breakfast selections.

The center, which will hold a grand opening 7-9 p.m. Saturday, accepts reservations seven days a week. Info: 484-951-0442 or 29cooks.com.

For Retail Watchers looking to upgrade their usual gift of flowers this Mother's Day, consider stopping by Klassic Gold in Hellertown for a sparkly ring, bracelet, necklace or set of earrings at a price that won't bankrupt you.

The full-service jewelry store at 650 Main St., next to Yeager's Pharmacy, is holding a retirement sale with all inventory 25 to 70 percent off.

Co-owner Denise Knauss is retiring, and the store, which recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, will be closing within the next few months. Info: 610-838-6657 or klassicgold.net.

Another seller of jewelry, C. Leslie Smith, moved from its location of more than 30 years in the Village West shopping center on Tilghman Street in South Whitehall Township to a larger space in the Shops at Cedar Point on Cedar Crest Boulevard, next to Pistachio Bar & Grille, in South Whitehall Township.

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