Home Cooking at Midwest Living's Culinary and Craft School | Midwest Living

Home Cooking at Midwest Living's Culinary and Craft School

In a timber-frame house at Silver Dollar City theme park in Branson, Missouri, the Midwest Living Culinary and Craft School takes the fuss out of cooking class. Here, it’s all about simple, tasty food prepared in handcrafted surroundings. Join us for a tour.
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    Enjoy a cooking class in a timber-frame house at Silver Dollar City theme park.
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    Debbie Dance Uhrig leads a class at the Midwest Living Culinary and Craft School. Though styled to look like an 1800s home, the school has a state-of-the-art kitchen.
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    Silver Dollar City craftsmen created every artful detail: hand-carved doors, rustic mantelpiece and blown-glass chandelier.
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    Rustic mantelpiece at the Culinary and Craft School.
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    Blown-glass chandelier at the Culinary and Craft School.
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    Detail of carving at Culinary and Craft School.
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    Swedish Tea Ring. See story for recipe link.
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    Ham Sliders. See story for recipe link.

The welcome scent greeting you just inside the door of Midwest Living’s new Culinary and Craft School might be hard to pin down, so let us help: It’s nostalgia. The aromas of herb-rubbed roasted chicken, pumpkin-spice fudge and buttery apple bars trigger a flood of warm memories among wood-paneled walls, hand-hammered copper tiles and a sparkling blown-glass chandelier.

When Midwest Living® was ready to bring its recipes to life with a cooking school, we found a perfect partner in the Silver Dollar City theme park in Branson, Missouri. The park has long charmed visitors with its mix of art, history and entertainment. In a single day, you can visit a blacksmith’s forge, nosh on succotash or hop on a roller coaster. That pride in regional traditions caught our imagination.

“So many of our personal stories are connected to the foods we eat and the recipes we pass down,” says Midwest Living Editor-in-Chief Greg Philby. “A place devoted to our region’s heritage is a natural partner for showcasing the foods our readers love. We knew Silver Dollar City was a great fit.”

Before a rapt audience of girlfriends and couples, instructor Debbie Dance Uhrig shows how to make the flaky crust in Midwest Living’s legendary Danish Pastry Apple Bars. Debbie’s no-nonsense practicality was born in her grandma’s farmhouse kitchen. “I always add eggs one at a time so I can check the quality of each one before I use it,” she says.

During the hour-long classes, conversation flows as students watch Debbie prepare each dish. Debbie answers questions, tells stories and shares samples of the foods she has cooked. After the hour is up, she often has to nudge participants to leave the kitchen. But like the very best hostesses, she just moves the party to comfy couches and encourages everyone to linger as long as they like.

Take a class! Our cooking school at Silver Dollar City features our favorite recipes from past and present issues, as well as new favorites, like fruit-studded Swedish Tea Ring and sweet-salty Ham Sliders. Classes cost $12 (on top of general admission). Participants get tastes of the recipe, a copy of Midwest Living and a one-year subscription. (800) 831-4386; sdcculinarycraftschool.com

Holly-jolly fun Silver Dollar City’s Old Time Christmas fest runs November 3–December 30, 2012. Take in the lights and shows, shop for crafts—and slip away for a cooking class.

(A version of this story appeared in Midwest Living® November/December 2012.)


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