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Des Plaines Park District Announces Winter Cooking Series with Chef Ron

Chef Ron Wells will teach three new cooking classes at Prairie Lakes Community Center beginning on January 23.
Chef Ron Wells will teach three new cooking classes at Prairie Lakes Community Center beginning on January 23.

The Des Plaines Park District will host three new cooking classes, taught by Chef Ron Wells, at Prairie Lakes Community Center, beginning on January 23. The series includes Everyday Healthy Eating, a course on how to make taste tempting recipes with reduced fat and sodium, on January 23; Joyful Chinese, a selection of fresh, colorful, and flavorful dishes in celebration of the Chinese New Year, on February 20; and Fish and Seafood, a Mediterranean twist on simple seafood dishes designed to spice up the Lenten season, on March 20. Classes are open to novice cooks and more experienced chefs alike. “Ron’s classes are fun and interactive, and the recipes are unique. He always adds great cooking and food tips so students learn something every time,” said Karyn Roth, Recreation Supervisor.

Wells is currently the Chef at the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth in Des Plaines, with over twenty years of kitchen experience. Prior to cooking for the Sisters, Wells was the Head Chef at Shriners Hospital for Children. He also worked under Executive Chef Michael in an East Dundee retirement community. He has recently published “A Taste of Ron’s Down Home Cooking,” with more than forty of his signature appetizer, main dish, and dessert recipes. Wells’ cooking style is classic American cuisine, with a personal twist derived from his Memphis roots. “My love of cooking comes from my mother, Maudie. She would be baking sweet potato pies and German chocolate cake in our kitchen when I was a child, and I would get to lick the spoon.” The cookbook is dedicated to her.

Classes are in the newly remodeled Prairie Lakes kitchen. “This unique setting will be a lot of fun with interactive, hands-on preparation and a social dining environment,” Roth said. “I have a passion for food,” said Wells, “I love to cook and create new recipes that everyone can make at home in their kitchen.” 

Registration is required. Classes run from 7:00 until 9:00pm. Recipes made in each class are posted on the Des Plaines Park District website, www.DPParks.org after the class. For more information call 847-391-5700.

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