My Cook’n with Class Story – The beginning of a Paysanne in Paris

A Blog is born – Paris Paysanne meets Cook’n with Class

It’s never easy kicking off a new idea particularly as a foreigner in a vibrant city like Paris. Cook’n With Class Paris has always been a place where creativity and entrepreneurship was always encouraged. We love dreamers as we are dreamers too. Almost 10 years since we opened the doors to our French cooking school in Paris, Cook’n With Class has encountered some very amazing people all who were just as passionate as we are about food. To help us kick off the celebrations in this very special year, we’ve asked some of the chefs and staff, bloggers and students who have walked through our doors, to share their Cook’n with Class story with us all. A little trip down memory lane to some of the stories even we’ve forgotten to give you the story of our school and the people behind it. We hope you will enjoy this series and be a part of our special year. Kicking things off for us is blogger and author, Emily Dilling the Paris Paysanne. Whose blogged kicked off with an interview of Chef Eric Fraudeau back in 2010. Merci Emily!

My first encounter with Cookn’ with Class dates back as far as the creation of my blog, Paris Paysanne back in 2010. I was a young blogger, unsure of what I was getting myself into, but all the same eager to begin reporting on Paris’ local food scene. Although I was shy about reaching out to people and had very little experience interviewing them, I was dedicated to finding food lovers in Paris and wanted to give them a place to share their passion and insights on the subject. To this day, I consider myself incredibly lucky that my first interview to appear on the blog (posted over six years ago!) was with the friendly and knowledgeable chefs Eric Fraudeau and Terresa Murphy.


I met with Eric and Terresa on a sunny September afternoon to talk about market shopping and eating with the seasons. My goal with the blog was to encourage Parisians to visit their local markets, support independent farmers, and to buy locally grown, seasonal produce. Luckily, Eric and Terresa had similar goals in mind and were in the middle of creating a course together that would have Terresa taking students to the market to show them how to select high quality, seasonal produce and then back to the cooking school for a hands-on vegetarian cooking class.


Cook'n with class
Chefs Eric & Terresa at the school’s grand opening post renovations 2010. Photo: Yetunde Oshodi


I had already had the opportunity to attend a cheese and wine pairing class held by Cookn’ With Class through Feels Like Home in Paris the short term apartment rental company that Eric’s wife Yetunde Oshodi owned at the time, so I already knew about the quality of information and instruction offered at the cooking school. This interview was a chance for me to get to know the chefs better and learn even more about the joys of food shopping and preparation in Paris.

Eric proved to be sensitive to his customer’s demands, and eager to adapt to their needs โ€œI can sense… a lot of vegetarian people asking for a vegetarian classโ€ he told me during our meeting, and this demand sparked his interest in offering not just vegetarian classes, but a class centered on thoughtful shopping- with a focus on organic, locally grown fruits and vegetables.


Cook'n with class
Joel Thiebault


When I look back now, six years and many blog posts later, I realize what an influence this encounter had on me. As a fledgling foodie, this was the first time I met impassioned professionals that shared my excitement about markets and local food movements. In the U.S I had met many people that belonged to this tribe- their involvement in the Slow Food movement, local food organizations, and their commitment to frequenting farmers markets inspired me to launch Paris Paysanne.

But I didn’t know any paysannes in Paris until I met Eric and Terresa โ€“ two committed chefs who care about where their food comes from. Seeing the influence that dedicated chefs and a small cooking school can have on their students inspired me to continue to promote the joys of eating well- from the satisfaction of supporting your local farmer to the reward of a home cooked meal shared with friends and family.


Emily Dilling


Ten years later and Cookn’ with Class is still at it- helping people to discover the pleasure of preparing food and the importance of good ingredients, inspiring its students, and this blogger, along the way!

Interested in French cooking classes in Paris? Book a class with Cook’n With Class Paris – small group sizes, classes all in English.

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