Are you ready to level up your vegan culinary skills? Or just find that nostalgic flavor bomb that you’ve been craving ever since the Cinnamon Snail closed down? Well, then I’ve got good news for you. Chef Adam Sobel is now offering monthly virtual cooking classes and bringing you all his tips and tricks, plus revealing the recipes of some of his most beloved Snail fare.
Oh, there are dad jokes, too. And good ones. They alone are, arguably, worth
the price of the class. But jokes aside, Adam’s classes are delighting everyone from raw celebrity chefs to your everyday Jersey vegan looking to amp up their cooking skills.
“I have really missed seeing and connecting with my customers, and teaching these classes has made it possible to reconnect,” said Adam, who had to close down the Cinnamon Snail at the beginning of the pandemic. And while he has enjoyed teaching vegan cooking classes in culinary schools, he’s especially excited about these virtual ones, in part because it makes them more affordable for people.
“Plus, streaming these classes from my home means when the birds who live in my house fly through the kitchen, or our rescued wallaby Doyle hops through, people get a candid taste of what my wacky unconventional home life is like.”
The most recent class focused on burgers and fries, including the all-time fan favorite Beastmode Burger Deluxe. The seitan burger boasts homemade bourbon BBQ sauce, jalapeno mac and cheese, smoked chili coconut bacon, and chipotle mayo.
Claire Loran of Old Bridge recalls her first time trying the Beastmode on the food truck, when she was vegetarian but not yet vegan. “I hadn’t had such an explosion of flavor in one vegan bite before. It made an impact.” So when the burger-centric class was announced, Claire said “attending was a no-brainer and I was beyond excited.”
“These classes allow me to give people some of what they are dying for,” Adam explained, “but also give me a chance to turn them on to some fun new creations, and some really useful home cooking tactics.” In addition to the Beastmode, the last course covered French Lentil Burger, Tofu Katsu Burger, and Adam’s favorite method for making homemade french fries.
Adam’s cookbook, Street Vegan, which came out in 2015, included recipes for some Cinnamon Snail classics including the Gochujang burger, fresh fig pancakes, and the famous vanilla bourbon crème brulée donuts and namesake cinnamon snails. However, both The Beastmode Burger, and the Thanksgiving Sandoo- which will be featured in November’s cooking class- were created after the book’s publication, and so were missing from the book, making their inclusion in the cooking classes even more exceptional.
In addition to Thanksgiving Sandoo sandwich, the upcoming Nov. 13 class will feature a variety of other dishes perfect for Thanksgiving or for any autumnal dinner. Plus, Adam will also share his personal tips on how to plan and prepare “to make the day-of-Thanksgiving as peaceful and stress free as possible.”
Each Zoom class costs $38 and lasts around two hours. Unlike some other cooking classes, these are not designed in a ‘cook-while-you-watch’ format. “I feel like people aren’t able to follow and learn as well, since they are usually stressing out and running all around their kitchen trying to keep up.”
Instead, you just relax and follow along as Adam shows you via various camera angles how to prepare everything. Attendees receive access to a copy of the recording and recipes so they can cook at their leisure afterwards. All live classes include Q&A time that usually runs over the two hours.
For those of you who, like me, may feel a little intimidated by the elaborate recipes and lengthy ingredient lists, Adam has some advice. “Be brave! Nothing is ‘hard to make,’ some things just require more time or attention to make.” He suggests thinking of each recipe component- burger, sauce, condiment, etc- as a mini-recipe that are manageable in and of themselves. “The mini recipes are easy; it’s really the bringing it all together that’s special. That’s what makes them really magical.“
"Adam's brilliance," said Loran after the class, "is how he combines flavors so they all complement each other instead of compete." And with his cooking classes, you'll be able to also.
“Once you have made something awesome once or twice, you really lose the fear or resistance to making it ever again," said Adam. "Then you have the skill to always make any kind of food for the people you love. What could be better than that?”
Did you attend one of Adam's classes already? Comment and tell us how it went!