Airbnb has launched its "cooking" category [Credit: Airbnb]

Airbnb launches “Cooking” category for home cooks worldwide

Worldwide: Airbnb has launched the latest arm of its Experiences activity series – “Cooking” – which will ensure travellers can partake in culinary classes taught by locals around the world.

The company reported that bookings for food and drink-themed experiences have shot up by 160 per cent since 2018 alone, following the launch of its Experiences category in 2016. 

Cooking Experiences will be hosted by anyone from farmers, families and cooks to even local celebrities at limited times available, including cooking lunch with Great British Bake Off judge Prue Leith in the UK [from £150 per person for three and a half hours], a heritage cooking class with Damian D’Silva in Singapore [from £36 per person for two and a half hours], and a maize workshop in Mexico with well-regarded chef, Enrique Olvera [from £17 per person for four hours].

The category will be dedicated to welcoming travellers to eat in “intimate” settings [in farms, in houses and in nature] and exploring famous food cities [including Lisbon, Florence, Mexico City and Singapore] with local hosts with extensive culinary expertise.

Airbnb says Cooking on its platform comprises of some three thousand recipes in more than 75 countries worldwide, that have each been approved by Slow Food guidelines.

To mark the launch of Cooking, Airbnb has also announced a contest to discover the best home cooks in the world. Of those who apply, 100 lucky candidates will be invited on a free trip to Slow Food’s University of Gastronomic Sciences in Pollenzo in Italy, where they will have the opportunity to study with chefs and culinary experts in their respective fields.

The trip will be made up of a variety of workshops, tasting sessions, field visits and on-site classes. Four courses with 25 spots available each have been made available from the week commencing 15 June.

Throughout the courses, the contest winners will be able to develop and fine-tune their own family recipes, which will go into a special Airbnb cookbook to be released at some point in 2020.

It is Airbnb’s latest Experiences offering since launching Animal Experiences last month.

For more information on how to enter or nominate a home cook, potential applicants are being asked to submit a personal essay to the website here, which must include proof of the nominee’s passion for cooking and their signature family recipe that they wish to refine. The entry period closes at 11.59 pm Eastern Time / 04.59 am GMT / 05.59 am CET on 23 / 24 December, with the competition winners being announced a month later.

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