Baking concept on dark background. Baking cookies for children, top view of variety of bak

New Classes are up
for June!

Pod Classes 20% off 
Single Parents 15% off 

Families with 2 or more

kids 
15-25% off 

Home Economics 101 

with Chef Pamela DiCristo

Food is Love 

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DiCristo Meals celebrates the authenticity of delicious meals, with fresh ingredients, and the joys of cooking while learning. 

 

While we've enjoyed offering cooking classes over the past 7 years to kids, teens, and adults alike, we're excited to expand our classes into a "course format" created  for those who wish to truly understand and explore the artistry of cooking in more depth. 

 

Home Economics 101 was specifically designed with kids and teens in mind, who enjoy cooking! This course is also intended to inspire healthy relationships with food. 

 

There's a "picky eater" that lives inside all of us, until we're introduced to something that we enjoy. This creates interest, then excitement, and this is where our kids start to grow, and become more confident in the kitchen, as well in the choices they make about food. Understanding how food fuels our body is key.

 

Here are some things you need to know! 

Child preparing pizza with the hands of a kid and fresh ingredients as mushrooms mozzarell

What are the age requirements and pod groupings? 

Our home economics classes are grouped 8-12 and 13-17 years of age.

How can I sign-up? 

You can book as a pod, meaning you have an established pod class or a group of friends, with at least 4 - 8 participants, and would prefer our Chef come to you. You may also come to us.  Your group will have the option to select their time and day. 

 

You may also sign your child or children up individually, where they will meet and cook with kids in their age group.

 

Is there a discount for families with multiple children?

Families signing up more than one child (2) will receive a 15% discount for the second child, and three children will receive 20% off  combined. Please contact us here, to sign-up for households of 2 or more.

 

Our Home Economics course has been submitted to a few home school websites, including The Home School Mom  and Homeschool Works

 

**We are also working to become apart of some of the local Charter Schools.

Cooking Class

How many classes are in each course, and how long are the classes? 

There are 8 classes in each course package. Classes are grouped ages 8-10, and the length is 1 hour and 30 minutes. Ages 11-14 and 15-17 are two hours per class.

Students will be given a starter kit on day one, which includes the following: 

  • 1 apron

  • 1 chefs jacket

  • 1 "chefs" starter kit 

  • 1 recipe book/journal

  • **Our 13-17 age group will receive a more advanced starter kit

Where is your commercial kitchen located?

We are excited to partner with Santa Barbara's - Healthy Warrior Meals, in their fully equipped, licensed, insured, and updated commercial kitchen, located at 428 Chapala Street.

 

DiCristo Meals is also licensed and insured, in addition to the commercial kitchen being licensed and insured. Chef Pamela also holds a food certification from the State of California, and a CPR certificate. 

Scroll down to the bottom to learn more about Chef Pamela DiCristo.

Our Curriculum 

What's covered in our courses? 

**All courses are tailored to the specific age group

 

Dicing, Slicing and Chopping

This class covers knife safety, as we want ALL students to understand how important it is to handle "cooking knives" properly and safely. From there, we'll explore different cutting techniques, including slicing julienne, dicing and mincing. There are 2 recipes incorporated in this class, where these cutting techniques will be put to good use. 

 

Sauces and Soups

The authenticity of stocks and sauces are what distinguishes a homemade chicken soup or bolognese from a restaurant chicken soup or bolognese. Good stocks and sauces form the base flavor component for many dishes that start this way, making it an essential kitchen skill. Learn the fundamentals behind creating a classic stock or sauce, while preparing classic soups. Then master the “mother” sauces, from a Tomato base to an Alfredo base, and so many more.  

 

Herbs and Spices

Herbs and Spices serve as the foundation to any and all recipes. The right combination of herbs are what separates a good dish from a great dish. The right amount of spice separates authentic from generic. When joining the two together, we're creating flavor, and flavor is everything. 

 

Poultry vs Seafood

Our first 3 classes are going to serve us well as we begin to incorporate meat and seafood. We'll review what we've learned in a mid-term type style, taking 2 recipes that call for meat and seafood, and preparing two meals from start to finish. We'll put our knife skills to good use, the pairing of herbs and spices - while creating the perfect flavor.

 

Breakfast 101

While some refer to breakfast as the most important meal of the day, we just refer to it as the most "favorite" meal of the day. With so many options to choose from, let's start with the basics. We'll explore sweets vs savory, and how the two come together in the most delectable way. Boiling and  scrambling eggs, to making an authentic pancake or waffle with simple tried and true recipes will stay with our class participants for a lifetime. 

 

Baking and Frosting

Let's get baking! While there are so many layers to this particular category, baking is a skill that can benefit our young chefs on so many levels. We'll begin with a very simple cake recipe with homemade icing. Technique is key, and learning the fundamentals of baking opens the door to so many possibilities. 

 

Pizza 101

This is such a fun class for our young chefs! At this point in the course, we've familiarized ourselves with herbs and spices, as well as sauces. Both are key components in creating the perfect pizza. We'll begin with a simple pizza dough made from scratch, paired with a homemade tomato sauce. Each participant will take pizza home to share with friends and family. 

 

Table Setting and Etiquette 101

We're coming to the end of this course, and as you know...slaving away in the kitchen is not complete unless we have a beautiful table to present all of our hard work. Lets begin with a simple table setting, placing our plates, forks, knives, spoons, and glasses in the right spot. Eating, serving, and table etiquette paired with the perfect meal. Our students are in for a delectable treat, as Chef Pamela will conduct a demo, where our young chefs will only be expected to observe and take notes. This class will assist in preparing students for their final exam. 

 

Express Yourself

This class was designed straight from the "Iron Chef" playbook, where students will be assigned one key ingredient, in which they have to create a dish from start to finish, using whatever supporting ingredients that are available in the kitchen. Students will be given their final assignments on this day, and will be expected to implement ingredients and techniques they've learned throughout the course.

 

Final Exam

It's time to recap! We'll enjoy a look back on all that we've learned. Students will get the opportunity to prepare their dish, and present it to the class for tasting. 

 

Each of our young Chefs will be presented with a Chef's Coat and Certificate. 

 

Each Course includes 1-2 recipes per class. 

Home Economics 101

Group Bookings

Contact us for here for group Bookings 

If you have a pod group or class with at least 4-8 kids, and you'd like to book an 8 week course, please submit your information below.

Your classes will be scheduled based on your availability, so please include at least 2 days and times that will work. Chef Pamela can travel to you, or your group can travel to our Commercial Kitchen.

 

There is a 20% discount for all pod bookings, with groups of 6 to 8 kids.   

** When we say pod bookings---if you have a group of kids that meet each week or weekly at the same time for other classes or activities, you may book as a group, verses individually. 

You may also inquire here, for birthday parties, special events, demos, and more! 

Thanks for submitting!

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Meet Chef Pamela DiCristo

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I was born and raised in Atlanta Georgia, where Sunday dinners were legendary, sun tea was the dinner drink of choice, fresh squeezed lemonade made the Georgia summers bearable, and every single dish was made from scratch.

Growing up surrounded by some of the most amazing home chefs, I developed a passion for food and heritage at a very early age — understanding where traditions began, how we honor and celebrate them, and the storytelling that accompanies every meal being prepared. 

My passion has afforded me some pretty amazing experiences, and I attribute every success that I've achieved to my quirky, yet unique journey.

 

While attending Dillard University  in New Orleans, LA, I had the opportunity to add additional cultural and flavorful layers to my craft.

 

I went on to live and work in New York, where I managed one of the city’s most iconic restaurants-- “Sarabeth's,” located right across the street from Central Park West, between the Ritz Carlton and the Plaza Hotel. 

 

That position and experience introduced me to the Irwin family, where I was fortunate enough to travel and work abroad in Australia. Working and cooking for one of the most inspiring families I've ever had the pleasure of knowing! It was an honor cooking for royalty!

From there, I relocated to Los Angeles for 9 years and then San Diego for 5 years, where I established myself in both cities as a professional chef and caterer, and have had (still do) the pleasure of cooking for some pretty amazing people.

 

We have a successful meal plan company located in Coronado, CA cooking and catering to a beautiful community of people. 

I began combining my love for food with my fondness for teaching, and for the past 7 years, teaching has been a huge part of what I do.

 

I am a survivor of Breast Cancer, married to my best friend and partner, and most recently a first time Mommy, who is more inspired now than ever before.

It is my belief that every child should have a basic to intermediate understanding of how food works on every level, while exploring all the benefits cooking can bring, combined with good manners and table etiquette.

 

This level of understanding and education fosters healthy relationships with food and all the many joys that cooking for yourself, and others can bring!