cooking classesInternational tastes and smells from around the world are coming to Winona this fall. Winona State University’s Cross-Cultural Outreach Program and Bluff Country Co-op have teamed up to host “Cooking Around the World.”

International students from WSU will teach classes on how to prepare traditional dishes from their home countries. Participants will step out of their comfort zone by tasting new food, meeting new people and experiencing a new culture.

“For people who are unable to travel, this gives them the opportunity to experience a new culture,” Melissa Gordon, Bluff Country Co-op Marketing manager, said.

“In most cultures around the world, food serves to bring people together. If we can employ that established custom on an international level, great things might result,” Gordon added.

During the first cooking class Sept. 10, WSU sophomores Linh Nguyen and Nhuan Le demonstrated how to make Vietnamese Spring Rolls.

“This class was not just a cooking class,” Le said. Along with learning how to cook the Vietnamese dish, the participants educated themselves about diversity and cultural differences from around the world.

“My favorite part about teaching the class was being able to share my culture with others,” Le added.

Along with the experience of teaching the class, the international students receive credit to help complete their Cross-Cultural Scholarship.

The Cross-Cultural Outreach Program offers a variety of cultural learning experiences for children, college students, and adults in Southeastern Minnesota with the purpose of bringing together people from diverse backgrounds that might otherwise never come to know and appreciate one another.

“Cooking Around the World” will continue from 10:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, Oct. 8, at Bluff Country Co-op with WSU students Xinyue Wang and Siya Cheng giving a demonstration on Chinese cuisine.

Classes also will take place Saturday, Nov. 12, and on the second Saturdays of February, March and April in the spring.

For more information, contact Kemale Pinar at