You don't have to eat take-out pizza or Chinese after a long work day. In this intensive hands-on workshop, "Making Healthy Meals for the Week," Abigail Bird Donovan, the chef and owner of Culinary Travels Personal Chef Service in Austin, demonstrates how to shop for the best seasonal products, how to trust your instincts with basic culinary techniques (roasting, sautéeing, saucing, and baking) and how to prepare three healthy family meals in a flash. Each student will prepare and take home three complete meals for a family of four. Menus include northern curried chicken over jasmine rice with broccoli & sugar snap peas; beef fajita & spinach-stuffed enchiladas with an ancho fire-roasted tomato sauce; and seafood cannelloni with a low-fat asparagus cream sauce. Sunday, July 25, noon-3pm. $95.
John Watt has been the executive chef at Houston's award-winning Prego for 12 years. In "House Specialties From Prego," Watt prepares some of the house specialties, including towering stacked crabmeat salad, shellfish soup, lasagna with veal meatballs, tomato coulis & pesto, and pumpkin seed-crusted snapper in roasted corn sauce. Monday, July 26, 6:30-9pm. $50.
Chefs Sondra Bernstein and John Toulze have been making culinary magic at The Girl & the Fig restaurants in California's Sonoma Valley. Their hallmark is country food with French influences; Bernstein and Toulze celebrate the summer growing season and their love of artisanal cheeses in the class, "The Girl & the Fig." Menu includes grilled fig salad with fig & port vinaigrette, grilled mahi mahi with fire-roasted tomato vinaigrette, basil-scented potato cakes, Sonoma County cheese course with dried fig compote, and lavender crème brûlée. Wednesday, July 28, 6:30-9pm. $60.
The Central Market Cooking School is at Broadway and Patterson.