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Cakes and Sweet Pastry

from £175.00

Have your cake and eat it too, with a day of baking skills and sweet pastry lessons from the River Cottage experts.

Nestled in the idyllic Devon countryside, a day at River Cottage HQ couldn’t be much sweeter – unless you spend it making cake, that is. Featuring both simple and complex baking techniques and a range of classic dessert recipes, our hands-on Cakes and Sweet Pastry course is the perfect introduction to the world of pâtisserie.

The course includes basic cake batter, vegetable cakes, sweet pastry, choux pastry, crème pâtissière and tarts, with the chance to sample some of your creations and take the rest home to impress friends and family.

Your day

09:30 - 17:00

  • Arrive at River Cottage

    You’ll be met at the top of the hill and transported to River Cottage HQ by tractor and trailer.

  • Make yourself at home

    You’ll meet your hosts and start the day with tea, coffee and treats fresh from the kitchen.

  • Practical session one

    Get started by learning how to make sweet pastry, which will rest in preparation for your tart later on.

  • Practical session two

    You’ll discover what makes the perfect cake mix, and bake a batch of muffins using your favourite flavours.

  • Practical session three

    Next you’ll try your hand at a more adventurous type of cake, using seasonal vegetables from the kitchen garden.

  • Break for tea and cake

    Take a rest and enjoy the fruits of your labour!

  • Practical session four

    Learn how to make a rich crème pâtissière, flavoured with fragrant fresh vanilla.

  • Practical session five

    Blind bake your pastry case, ready to add your tart filling.

  • Lunch

    When it’s time to sit down and refuel, you’ll be served lunch fresh from the River Cottage kitchen.

  • Practical session six

    After lunch you’ll make a batch of choux pastry, ready to use in your dessert.

  • Practical session seven

    You’ll fill your tarts with crème pâtissiere and decorate with some seasonal goodies.

  • Dessert

    After all your hard work you’ll have a chance to enjoy your choux buns, with extra trimmings made by the River Cottage chefs.

  • Departure

    There will be time to chat to your fellow scholars and the River Cottage team, before being whisked back up the hill by our tractor and trailer – with all your treats to take home!

Please note: This is a guide to the activities that will make up your course at River Cottage. This is by no means set in stone and will depend on seasonal availability.

On occasion cookery schools will use equipment that includes induction hobs. It is recommended that people with pace makers should not work on these units. If you are concerned or would like to check whether or not induction hobs will be used on the course you are interested in, please call us on 01297 630302.

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All prices include VAT.

Further information...

This course is run from River Cottage HQ on the Dorset/Devon borders. Full address details of HQ will be provided once you have booked.

We are a licensed venue. We have a wide selection of the finest organic wines available to purchase.

If you need local accommodation we have a full list available.

We would advise that this course is only really suitable for 12 years of age and upwards. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult. We put these guidelines in place for the safety, comfort and enjoyment of all our guests.

Sorry, we’re afraid this course is not suitable for those with coeliac disease or wheat intolerances. However we do run Gluten Free Cookery courses.

  • Sustainable Restaurant Association
  • Food Reader Awards 2014
  • The British Cookery School Awards 2014
  • Visit Devon Tourism Awards 2015 Gold