Anastasia Wardach, 18, of Clarks Summit, will teach four cooking classes at the Abington Community Library, 1200 W. Grove St. South Abington Township, July 10, 11, 17 and 18 from 6 to 8 p.m.
The classes will focus on teaching teens basic cooking skills and helping them feel more confident in the kitchen. Students entering grades seven through 12 are welcome to register. Classes are free, but registration is requested and there is a limit of 15.
“We want to make them feel confident to cook food they are familiar with in a healthier version and from scratch,” Wardach said.
Wardach and Sandy Longo, the young adults librarian, came up with the concept of a teenager teaching other teens to cook.
“The most difficult part of starting the class was creating the menus. There isn’t an oven at the library, so most things are cooked either on a portable gas burner, microwave or a toaster oven,” Wardach said.
Wardach will work with Italian foods, such as meatballs, homemade garlic bread, cinnamon rolls, fresh butter and marinara sauce at the first class. During the second class she will demonstrate how to cook healthy snacks; class three will focus on sushi and class four, homemade waffles, ice cream and sundae toppings.
This is not the first class Wardach has instructed; she taught teens how to make fresh pasta, pesto and Alfredo sauce in 2012.
“I love teaching, it comes very natural to me. It’s so much fun for me to share what I love with others and seeing that sense of accomplishment on their faces when they tell me they went home and cooked for their family. It’s very rewarding.”
Wardach has worked as a sous chef at St. Mary’s Center, Scranton. There she was trained and worked with Chef John Wiscosky.
Cooking has always been a part of Wardach’s life. She said she would spend days watching Emeril Lagasse and Bobby Flay on the Food Network and has memories of making bread with her mother, Lynne Wardach, and making meals for parties with her father, Paul Wardach. She likes to try new techniques with her cooking, but also keeps it simple with fresh ingredients.
Wardach is currently a student at the Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, N.Y., pursing her associate degree. She intends to enter the bachelor program after she earns her associate degree. After culinary school, Wardach would like to travel to Europe and eventually open her own restaurant.
“I love the French bistro style.”
For more information on Wardach’s class at the library call 570.587.3440.