***UPDATE — JUNE 2010: Hi Everyone!  I’m so pleased that there has been such incredible interest in my classes!  Unfortunately, I have to put the schedule on hold for the summer, until further notice. I’m filming a pilot episode of a new television program and I need to give it my full attention.  If you want to be kept informed of future classes, email me at miri at mirileigh dot com and I will be sure to let you know when I can offer enrollment once again.  Meanwhile, browse below for the class selection.***

“Miri’s classes are a delight.  They are well-organized and packed with useful lessons and hands-on experience.  Miri is extremely knowledgeable… her humility and attitude toward chance are what baking is all about.”

-Ruth Bracken, A.K.A. The Pastry Goddess

Date Time Class
Sat, Jan. 9, 2010 9am to 12pm Layer Cakes and Basic Cake Decorating We’ll cover the basic techniques to make layered birthday and special-occasion cakes. We will cover layering, filling, icing, decorating, and presenting a finished cake… all the skills you need to make bakery-quality cakes at home. You will learn how to make shell borders, piped decorations, and icing roses.

Fee: $65 **SOLD OUT**

Sat, Feb. 6, 2010 9am to 12pm Valentine’s Chocolate Ruffle Cake We’ll make a decadent chocolate ruffle cake, perfect for Valentine’s Day. This showy cake is sure to impress your Valentine and satisfy your most intense chocolate cravings. This class covers not only cake decorating techniques, but also special techniques for working with and decorating with chocolate. Each participant will make a decadent chocolate ruffle cake to take home.

Fee: $75 **SOLD OUT**

Sat, Mar. 6, 2010 9am to 1pm Doll Cake You’ll learn how to make a classic doll cake for that special little (or grown-up!) girl in your life. We’ll layer a moist butter cake and then trim the cake to look like a skirt. After placing a toy doll in the middle, we’ll decorate the skirt, using buttercream and fondant, to resemble an elegant gown. This is a one-of-a-kind cake that she’ll remember forever, perfect for birthdays and even bridal showers. You’ll make your own doll cake to take home.

Fee: $85 **One Space Left**

Sat, Apr. 3, 2010 9am to 12pm Designer Easter Cookies We’ll use royal icing to decorate buttery-delicious Easter cookies in an array of holiday-themed designs. Techniques for rolling and cutting dough, baking, and decorating will be covered. You’ll take home a dozen beautifully decorated Easter cookies.

Fee: $65

Sat, May 8, 2010 9am to 2pm Children’s Birthday Cakes We’ll cover techniques for making children’s birthday cakes, from layering and filling to decorating. Instruction includes the use of buttercream, fondant, ribbon, and craft supplies. Participants can choose to make one of two designs: Fairy Princess Cake or Dragon Cake. Techniques learned while making these cakes can be applied to a nearly endless range of other cake characters and themes. You’ll be limited only by your and your child’s imaginations.

Fee: $85 ** SOLD OUT**

Sat, May 22, 2010 9am to 1pm Wedding Cake Basics This class will cover the basics of wedding cake construction and design. You will learn how to choose the appropriate size for the cake, where to get materials, how to assemble and transport a cake, and basic design techniques. This is a demonstration-based class, where the instructor will assemble a medium-size wedding cake from start to finish. You will assist with design and construction and learn everything you need to know to design your own cake at home. Due to time and space constraints, participants will not assemble their own wedding cakes during this class.

Fee: $65 **SOLD OUT**

Sat, June 5, 2010 9am to 12pm Fresh Fruit Tarts Nothing says summer like a fresh fruit tart. In this class, we’ll make a beautiful custard-filled, fruit-topped tart using berries, kiwis, apricots, and other seasonal fruit. You’ll learn how to make the tart crust and rich custard filling from scratch, plus techniques for creating bakery-quality decorative glazed patterns with sliced and whole fruit. You will make your own delicious tart to take home.


Sat, July 10, 2010 9am to 1pm Summer Fruit Pies You’ll learn basic techniques for making flaky crusts and perfectly sweetened fruit fillings that will showcase summer fruit at its finest. We’ll cover lattice-top, open-face, and double-crust techniques to make peach, blueberry, and strawberry-rhubarb pies. Each student will take home a beautiful pie.


August – No Class - - -
Sat, Sep. 25, 2010 9am to 12pm Fall Quick Breads We’ll  make three classic and delicious recipes that are perfect for fall: pumpkin, zucchini-nut  and apple-spice breads. Each student will take home a warm loaf, fresh out of the oven.


Sat, Oct. 23, 2010 9am to 1pm Spooky Halloween Cupcakes We’ll decorate Halloween-themed cupcakes that are terrifyingly delicious. Use of royal icing, fondant, craft supplies, and ribbon will be covered. Students will take home their own finished Halloween treats.


Sat, Nov. 13, 2010 9am to 2pm Holiday Pies You’ll learn techniques for making two classics: apple pie and pumpkin pie. For the apple pie, you’ll learn how to choose the right apples and make a filling that’s never too wet or gooey. For the pumpkin pie, we’ll use fresh pumpkin (not canned) to make a pumpkin pie unlike any other you’ve ever tasted. Each student will take home one steaming-fresh holiday pie.


Sat, Dec. 11, 2010 9am to 1pm Holiday Cookies I’ll share recipes for my all-time favorites.  We’ll make ice-box cookies, drop cookies, and rolled cookies that will keep your holiday guests asking for more through New Year’s. You’ll leave with a box of delicious holiday cookies to share with friends and family.



Would you like to learn how to make showcase cakes, pastries, and desserts? I am a Bay Area pastry chef, food writer, and food stylist and I offer fun, intimate classes where you can learn how to make wedding cakes, birthday cakes, children’s cakes, pies, tarts, quick breads and more. Classes are held in a private Emeryville loft with stunning Bay views and a state-of-the-art Viking kitchen. All materials are included, and you’ll leave each class with the recipes, skills and knowledge for creating showcase desserts at home. My classes are relaxed and informal, offering you the opportunity to learn in a hands-on environment and have a great time.

How do I enroll?
To enroll, please email miri (at) lauracarmen (dot) com with the class date(s) you are interested in to confirm availability. I will promptly send you instructions for payment by check or PayPal, and your enrollment will be confirmed once payment is received. Please note that enrollment is transferable but not refundable. Classes are limited to six people each to ensure the highest quality learning experience, so please register early.

Where are classes located?
All classes are held in a private loft in Emeryville, Calif., with stunning Bay views and a state-of-the-art Viking kitchen. The address and directions will be emailed to you upon enrollment.

What is included in the fee?
The fee covers your enrollment and all ingredients, materials, tools, supplies, decorations, and recipes. I will also provide you with a box to transport your finished dessert(s) home.

What should I bring?
All materials and supplies are provided. You are welcome to bring a snack, water bottle, or beverage of your choice. You may also bring a notepad and pencil and your digital camera, if you wish to photograph instruction or other students’ work (with their permission, of course.)

What should I wear?
Comfortable clothing and sensible shoes (closed-toe sneakers) are essential so you can feel relaxed and participate fully as you move around the kitchen. Wearing an apron is highly recommended to protect your clothing.

May I bring my child?
Unless otherwise noted, all classes are designed for adults and youngsters over the age of 14, accompanied by a parent. Younger children are not permitted, both for liability reasons and for the sake of preserving the quality of the educational experience for everyone.

What else do I need to know?
Classes are designed to be fun and relaxed! No prior experience is required and there’s no such thing as a silly question. Just come with a curious mind, an open heart, and a desire to learn and collaborate. You will leave with new friends and skills that will last a lifetime.
Additional questions?  Please email me at miri [at] lauracarmen [dot] com.

8 Responses to Classes

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  4. Reese Huang says:

    I’m interested in baking, and I’ve been looking all over for a baking school, but have yet to find one I’m interested in. Found your website and I’m interested in what you got to offer. Please let me know once your classes opens up. Thanks, and have a great time filming.

    • miri says:

      Hi Reese! I wish I could teach the baking classes and I will definitely let you know if I am able to start up again. It’s a lot of fun. I’m not sure where you live, but I might have some suggestions for you on where you can find classes locally. E-mail me if you’d like more info. :)

  5. Sara says:

    Are you still offering baking classes? Would be interested in attending!

    • miri says:

      Hi Sara. I’m not currently teaching any classes but I will let you know if there are any in the future. Thank you so much for your interest!

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