Cooking Program at The Element
Shortly after the students returned from their Odyssey trip, the cooking program at The Element began. The goal of our cooking program is to develop the students’ ability to plan meals and cook using nutritious, delicious, and whole foods. Before students began cooking lunches for the whole class, they participated in a few teacher-led workshops to help them get to know our new kitchen (including a soup, salad, vegetarian and baking workshop). During their first workshop, students successfully followed their first recipe – apple coleslaw with a maple dijon dressing.
As a part of the cooking program, a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Stephanie Kay, led a workshop on nutrition. She spoke about the three macronutrients that make up a healthy, balanced diet (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) and gave the students ideas for incorporating these nutrients into delicious meals and snacks. She also focused on important skills like reading ingredients lists and nutrition labels. An Ottawa Public Health Inspector also spoke to the students about Safe Food Handling.
Students will begin cooking lunches for the whole class during the week of October 19th. In small groups, students will cook hot lunches for The Element community three days a week. Students are responsible for the menu, recipes, grocery list, grocery trip and the preparation of the meal. Student cooking teams organize themselves to accomplish this impressive task, which then benefits the community at large.