In-Person Cooking Class

Learn to Bake - Winter 2018

4 Class Series

Do you have a sweet tooth? Have you been put in charge of your child’s bake sale? Get back to the basics of baking with our Co-Founder Jen Nurse and Chef Sasha Crehan in this four-week Learn to Bake course. Fire up the ovens, roll out your dough, and get ready to bake up a storm.

Buttery: Fats in Baking

Thu | Jan 25, 2018 | 6–10P

Teacher Sasha Crehan

Teacher Jen Nurse

Understanding the use of butter (and other fats) is one of the keys to good baking. From the nutty flavor and crispness achieved with browned butter, to the flakiest of pie crust made with ice-cold lard, Chefs Jen and Sasha will share recipes and methods to help you build a solid foundation of baking knowledge.

Menu | Recipes

Citrus Almond Thumbprints
with Jam

Triple Ginger Cookies

Brown Butter Almond Tuiles


Creamy: Custards, Curds, and Ganache

Thu | Feb 01, 2018 | 6–10P

Teacher Sasha Crehan

Teacher Jen Nurse

Mastering creamy desserts is easier than you may think. Chefs Jen and Sasha will teach you about the right mix of ingredients, how they're incorporated, and the methods by which they're heated and cooled. You'll leave with the knowledge to make fantastic curds, custards and creams at home.

Menu | Recipes

Banana Cream Pie

Coconut Cream Pie

Lemon Cream


Airy: Air and Steam in Baked Goods

Thu | Feb 08, 2018 | 6–10P

Teacher Sasha Crehan

Teacher Jen Nurse

Chefs Jen and Sasha will show you how to use tiny bubbles of air to your baking advantage. Air and steam, usually enhanced by heat, make our meringues feather-light, our crusts flaky, and our cakes and soufflés rise to every occasion. This class will have you walking on air with lots of techniques and fun recipes to use at home.

Menu | Recipes

Meringues
Many Ways

Pâte à Choux
for Cream Puffs & Eclairs


Cakey: And Now, Celebration Cakes!

Thu | Feb 15, 2018 | 6–10P

Teacher Sasha Crehan

Teacher Jen Nurse

Chefs Jen and Sasha, both former pastry chefs and bakery owners, know the ins and outs of creating spectacular layer cakes. You will learn recipes for tender, delicious cakes, extravagant fillings and a gorgeous buttercream you'll use time and again. We'll share the art of frosting a cake, along with some simple but impressive decorating techniques. Vive la cake!

Menu | Recipes

Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting

Classic Buttermilk Cake


* Menus and recipes subject to change
About the teacher s

Sasha Crehan

SASHA CREHAN teaches The Civic Kitchen's Learn to Bake series for home bakers. She believes that once her students understand the chemistry behind the magic of perfectly whipped egg whites, the multifaceted personality of sugar, and the glory of butter, they can fully immerse themselves in the joy of successful baking.
Sasha studied Pastry Arts at Tante Marie’s Cooking School. After years of working as a pastry chef at Bay Area restaurants and bakeries such as Bay Wolf, Garibaldi’s, Café Rouge and Sweet Adeline Bakeshop, she returned to her alma mater to teach the Professional Pastry Course and many recreational classes. Sasha has also worked as a freelance baker of specialty cakes and desserts for weddings and other celebrations.

Jen Nurse

JEN NURSE, co-founder of The Civic Kitchen, has a passion for helping home cooks develop the skills and confidence to create great meals and have fun in their own kitchens. She relishes seeing the joy on students' faces as they realize they're mastering something they once feared. Her mission is to foster competence and civility through the medium of shared food experiences.
Before founding The Civic Kitchen, Jen led cooking classes for kids and adults at Tante Marie’s Cooking School, 18 Reasons, and elementary, middle and high schools throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
After years as a prolific and curious home cook, Jen studied pastry arts at the Art Institute of Seattle. She eventually scuttled her 15-year telecommunications career to open an award-winning boutique bakery in Seattle. After relocating to San Francisco, she worked as a pastry chef and recipe developer before enrolling in Tante Marie’s professional culinary program to gain a deeper knowledge of the kitchen's savory side. Soon thereafter, she found her deepest love of cooking when she began to teach.
Jen credits her mother’s exceptional home cooking (crêpes with Mornay sauce? Go, Mom!), her beloved Aunt Josy’s flaky-crust empanadas, and a transformative teenage year in Brescia, Italy with sparking her culinary curiosity. An insatiable bookworm, she blissfully shares her cookbook library with guests of The Civic Kitchen.

Other Classes taught by Jen

Knife Skills
Tue | Mar 26, 2024 | 6P

Feasting with Friends
Part of the Learn to Cook More Series
Thu | Mar 28, 2024 | 6P