The Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center (Higher Ed) provides undergraduate and graduate degree programs, professional development courses, as well as 95,000 square feet of high-tech conference facilities. LEARN MORE
  Cooking Along the Crooked Road

  Cooking Classes

Tie Up Your Apron Strings and Join us for Our 2015 Spring Culinary Classes.

Spring cleaning is around the corner and it is time to clean out those old over used and tired recipes and begin collecting some new recipes to make your culinary life more healthy, creative and fun. Join us to learn new techniques and skills that will stimulate your interest, your intellect and your taste buds.

"Cooking Along the Crooked Road" classes offer children, teens and adults hands-on, creative experiences that can transform mere nourishment into culinary adventures. Students of all ages acquire valuable life-long skills, taught by local chefs and other accomplished, imaginative cooks. From healthy lifestyle cooking and a variety ethnic culinary classes to bread and pastry making and special youth classes, there is something for everyone in the warmth of the teaching kitchen! During spring and early summer 2015, we have added 12 new and exciting classes to choose from on Monday evenings. We will also be incorporating some special Saturday events.

We invite you like our new Facebook page: Cooking Along the Crooked Road to receive updates and class information as well as great cooking tips and recipes.

If you wish to receive more information about our classes, you can also go to our home page and click on Sign up for Email News on the bottom right hand corner. Be sure to click culinary classes as well as any other events you wish to hear about regularly.

Gift Certificates: What better way to surprise that hard-to-buy-for chef in the family or that friend who loves to cook...than with an HEC culinary class gift certificate. Our culinary classes are both fun and educational and promise to leave you hungry for learning more! Certificates can be purchased by phone and mailed directly to you or the recipient. 276 619-4300.

Did you know that our culinary kitchen is available to rent for special events? Groups up to 20 can create their own special hands-on cooking class and meal. Want to have a unique party for that upcoming shower or birthday? What about a girl or guy’s night out? A bridesmaids’ luncheon or special anniversary cooking class? We can help plan this and steer you to the perfect culinary teacher. For more information on room rental rates, contact conference services.


Heart Healthy Cooking with Garden Vegetables
June 1, 2015
Deni Peterson and Kim Evans

Join Deni Peterson and Kim Evans to learn all about how to keep your heart healthy with fresh vegetables from the garden or farmer's market. The class will cook some new delicious recipes together just in time for fresh produce! Learn to make delicious sauces and dressings as well as techniques and tips on how to your freeze produce correctly.

This class is in cooperation with ASD's Grow Your Own program.

Summer Sizzlin' in the Kitchen Teen Camp
June 22-25, 2015

Teens, aged 12-17, will enjoy four days of chillin’ and cookin’ in the HEC teaching kitchen with a line -up of well-known area chefs and culinary experts. Students will be preparing healthy daily recipes and learning basic kitchen skills as well as shopping and nutritional guidelines. Let the creative juices flow as students learn all about healthy and teen friendly breakfasts with Jassen Campbell of Heartwood; getting their green on with veggies with ASD's Deni Peterson;the sweet side of life with Kelli Mehl and It's Italian with Matt Shy of Mellow Mushroom. See brochure for more information and details.

Canning Fresh From the Garden
July 13, 2015
Deni Peterson, ASD

Keep your veggies all year round by canning them straight from the garden. What better way to preserve the summer flavors for winter eating! Join Deni Peterson from Appalachian Sustainable Development as she leads you through the steps involved in canning safely using the hot water bath procedure. She will discuss various canning techniques and recipes while working together to create delicious salsa and some pickled items (depending on what's in the garden). Everyone will take home some product!

This class is in cooperation with ASD's Grow Your Own program.

Cooking From the Book #3
July 20, 2015
6-9 pm
Sheridan Nice, Mona Lisa's

" More Home Cooking: A Writer's Return to the Kitchen. is a five star expression of Laurie Colwin's lifelong passion for cuisine. In this delightful mix of recipes, advice, and anecdotes, she writes about often-overlooked food items such as beets, pears, black beans, and chutney. With down-to-earth charm and wit, Colwin also discusses the many pleasures and problems of cooking at home in essays including "Desserts That Quiver," "Turkey Angst," and "Catering on One Dollar a Head." As informative as it is entertaining, More Home Cooking is a delicious treat for anyone who loves to spend time in the kitchen. " One reviewer has called this book, " Literary Comfort Food. Highly Nutritious for the Soul". Add this to your summer reading list and then join Sheridan in the kitchen for a lively book discussion and cooking class using her favorite picks!

Cancellation and Refund Policy

The Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center reserves the right to cancel any class or make any other changes it deems necessary. Course fees will be refunded in full when the Higher Education Center cancels a course.

We also recognize that you may occasionally need to cancel your registration. You will receive a full refund for a Monday Class if you cancel your class by noon on Wednesday prior to the day of the class and a full refund for a Saturday Class if you cancel your class by noon on Monday prior to the day of class. It must be at least five days prior to the class. The chefs and cooks need to order their food and supplies several days ahead. If you fail to show up for a class, no refund will be made. You may allow someone to come in your place if you notify us by noon on the day of the class.

If you do need to cancel prior to the cancellation deadline, you may apply your payment to a future class. If you request a refund, you will be required to register as a vendor with the University of Virginia. This is a simple process that takes only a few minutes and may be done online by going to and choosing the Vendor Registration Form link.

See the schedule of classes (Adobe Reader required)

Comments about recent classes:

Summertime Grill and Chill: Both instructors and staff were great and very professional! Elizabeth

Cooking Along the Mediterranean Class: Wonderful class, great food and nice facilities! Thanks Laura

Cooking Along the Mediterranean Class: Amine was awesome and so enthusiastic. He answered any questions we had. I can’t wait to come back! Barbara

Low Country Boil class with Shawn Crookshank/Tim Arnold: This was a wonderful class. Please offer more opportunities like this. I enjoyed relaxing on the patio for a meal! Jeoff

The Julia Child Class was fabulous. Sheridan was so calm, prepared, efficient and made it all look so easy and taste so good! Judi

I cannot suggest one thing to make the Julia Child class more perfect. Hannah

Recipe of the Month:

July's Recipe of the Month
June's Recipe of the Month
January's Recipe of the Month

November's Recipe of the Month
October's Recipe of the Month
September's Recipe of the Month
June's Recipe of the Month
Archive of Recipes

Contact Information

For additional information regarding Cooking Classes, contact the information desk.

tel: 276-619-4300

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