Catering chef branches out to offer freezer meal cooking classes

Published 9:00 am Sunday, November 11, 2018

WELLS ­— A local catering business owner is putting some of the cooking in the hands of students this month as she begins offering cooking classes.

Lacey Hassing, owner of Lacey’s Catering in Wells, will start those classes with one on freezer meals. She said she picked this one to kick off her class offerings based on what people have expressed interest in.

“The people that I’ve talked to in the area are like, you know, ‘I have this folder on Pinterest that’s specifically freezer meals but I never take the time to actually go gather all the ingredients, do the prep work and put it in the freezer,’” Hassing said.

Email newsletter signup

She also considered it a good fit for both her business, as she caters fewer weddings in the winter, and for the upcoming weather.

“It is going into winter, so it’s comfort food, especially, and no one’s afraid to use their oven in the winter,” she said.

The class will be making stuffed shells, no-peek chicken, cinnamon bread with cream cheese drizzle, breakfast burritos, a Philly cheesesteak skillet and cheesy chicken tortellini soup with garlic toast. Each student will make four servings of each meal for $100 — unless they upgrade to six servings for $150. Hassing will have the meal components ready for the class, and students will assemble the dishes.

“They’re still cooking, but they’re not also just away in the kitchen,” she said.

According to Hassing, the toughest part so far was setting the menu.

“My biggest challenge is, do people like to eat the same things that I like to eat?” she said.

Initially the dishes had a heavily Italian slant. Hassing said her freezer meal array is intended to hit different meals, including breakfast — and it’s intended to all fit together in the freezer.

She’s been practicing since last winter and keeping tabs on how long meals can stay in the freezer and how best to wrap them up.

“I’ve done my research, and I’m trying to make it as easy as possible on everyone else,” she said.

Hassing said she has several college students registered for the class, but it could also suit those who want to get started on freezer meals but don’t have the time to do every step.

Hassing will send the recipes home with her students, who will also receive tips to complete them quickly and efficiently, she said.

Hassing said both scheduled sessions — she will have one Tuesday and one Nov 28 — of her class are filling well. She has set the class maximum at 18 for now, but in the future class numbers have the potential to change as Hassing figures out how many people she can host comfortably for both her space and her clients.

Although she has not scheduled further classes, Hassing said she hopes these freezer meal events will be the beginning of more. She is considering a gourmet cooking course as well as one for children.

Both freezer meal classes begin at 6:30 p.m.

“We’ll start with that and see where it leads,” she said.

Sign me up

Who: Lacey’s Catering

What: Freezer meals cooking classes

When: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Nov. 28

Where: Lacey’s Catering, 31 Second Ave. NW, Wells

How much: $100 for four servings of six meals, $150 for six servings of six meals. For more information and class updates, see Lacey’s Catering Facebook page.

About Sarah Kocher

Sarah covers education and arts and culture for the Tribune.

email author More by Sarah