Due to stay-at-home orders and the shuttering of restaurants and bars around the world, you might be dabbling in cooking and baking more than usual right now. With everything closed and many people ordering in less (although you should if you can afford to, as it supports your favorite restaurants during this difficult time), many people are spending more time in the kitchen, both for sustenance and as a form of therapy and stress relief. And, with their day jobs we hope only temporarily closed, many top chefs around the world are sharing their wisdom with the masses, launching social media cooking shows and tutorials to teach viewers how to cook and bake, as well as creating a forum to ask questions and connect during these socially isolating times. Here are some of the pros from the food industry and the world’s best restaurants who are offering virtual cooking lessons during the COVID-19 lockdown.
If you’re a foodie, you probably know the name Massimo Bottura, and almost definitely know the name of his award-winning Osteria Francescana. The three-Michelin-starred restaurant is routinely ranked among the best in the world for its innovative takes on Italian classics. Naturally, the Modena establishment is closed for now as Italy hunkers down to weather the COVID-19 storm, but chef-patron Bottura (who was also the subject of an episode of Netflix’s Chef’s Table) is still cookin’ and sharing his wisdom with the world. Every night around 8 p.m. Central European Time, Bottura and his family livestream their dinner preparations in a show called Kitchen Quarantine. The episodes are then saved to his account as posts, so you can go back and catch up on old ones, where he and his family prepare three-course meals of delicious Italian and multicultural fare. Sometimes the narration is in Italian, but the video shows exactly what’s being done and how the food is prepared so you can still follow along. Follow him on Instagram to learn from one of the masters.
Portland’s famous and beloved restaurant scene has been hit hard by the shutdowns, but they’re hitting back just as hard with creative ways to reach their customers and get through these difficult times. Gabriel Rucker is one of those leading the charge to connect with his diners by sharing recipes via his Instagram. The James Beard award-winning head chef of Le Pigeon and Canard has been offering Instagram cooking classes roughly every day for the past week, posting instructions on how to make delicious meals like Canard’s Steam burgers, pork chops, chili mayo, and miso black cod rice bowls. Follow him on Instagram for more and to watch old recipes (which are saved in his Story Highlights).
Instagram darling and New York Times Cooking columnist Alison Roman is perhaps best known for her viral (but in the good internet way) recipes like #TheStew and #TheCookies. Lucky for us during this time, she is maintaining her solid social media presence and has been posting cooking and baking tutorials both on her personal Instagram and on NYT Cooking’s account, as well as offering advice on ingredient substitutions for stay-at-homers with dwindling pantries and answering all our cooking questions. Most recently, she did an Instagram Story about how to make her popular #TheCookies recipe (located now on her Story Highlights) and over on NYT Cooking’s Instagram Story, she’s most recently gone over how to make “perfect matzo ball soup.” Follow the two accounts to check for new
If you’re not already on the Bon Appetit Test Kitchen train, now’s the time. Over the past few years, the long-running magazine has been boosting its digital content by making cooking videos, but it’s not just the good food that has millions of people tuning in. It’s the magazine’s ensemble of Test Kitchen chefs — like Brad Leone, Claire Saffitz, Molly Baz, Chris Morocco, Carla Lalli, and Andy Baraghani — who are the real stars of the show with their fun personalities and delightful interactions. Full of humor, warmth, and plenty of kitchen mishaps, the BA Test Kitchen has attracted a cult following because of these chefs, and it’s just about the most feel-good thing ever. The BA YouTube Channel has several different shows with the different cooks, ranging from the more experimental like Gourmet Makes where Saffitz attempts to make gourmet versions of popular snack foods via more straightforward recipes. Follow the Bon Appetit YouTube channel and Instagram account to stay tuned. (And if you want to get really into it, follow each of the chefs on Instagram in turn, as they sometimes share videos and advice from their homes.)
Even though he only recently got famous for being a member and resident food and wine guru of the Fab Five in Netflix’s Queer Eye reboot, Antoni Porowski had a long history in the food and beverage industry before taking his knowledge and expertise to Queer Eye to help the show’s participants learn about cooking and baking. Now he’s helping us. On IGTV, he’s started hosting a video series called Quar Eye: Cooking in Quarantine where he talks viewers through how to make different recipes (usually he’s made the food ahead of time to prevent the videos from being very long, so he covers ingredients, how to prep them, cooking steps, etc.) So far, he’s released thirteen episodes, cooking dishes like chicken parm and salmon squash. Follow his Instagram to be updated on new episodes and find old ones.
Top Chef host and one of the biggest stars of the Food Network, Padma Lakshmi has also been sharing cooking content on her Instagram, covering how to make things like chicken stock, kootu (an Indian dish), and more. Her kids often co-star, helping out with the prep and cooking. Check it out on IGTV and her personal page.
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