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Chemistry in the kitchen: both with campers and counselors (aww!) and warmed milk and acid (vinegar).Students spent the morning learning how to create fresh, "ricotta" cheese in the kitchen using only whole milk and an acid (vinegar, in this case). The chef teachers warmed the milk in a pot on the stove. Once warm, the white vinegar was added to the milk and chef-campers watched the milk curdle. The chemical reaction created solid curds and liquid whey! We separated the curds, seasoned with salt... and had fresh ricotta cheese! The cheese was stuff inside freshly prepared empanada dough, alongside a summer succotash salad of corn, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and avocado.

Check out these delicious, fresh recipes, here!

Today marks the beginning of our first COMBO CAMP: Science and Cooking! Our little chef-scientists joined us in the kitchen for a lesson on baking soda!We prepared an Irish Soda Bread recipe to demonstrate how baking soda reacts with flour and salt. What a DELICIOUS reaction it created!For lunch, our campers paired this hearty bread with a summer-celebration soup. This soup celebrated the ripeness of zucchini, tomatoes, bell peppers, and corn.In the afternoon, our kitchen turned into a "mini" science classroom, exploring the physical composition of popcorn kernels and how they react to heat. Our chef-scientists loved watching, seasoning, and eating a large batch of popcorn made from the stove's conductive heat.

View today's scientific recipes, here!

The final day of Cooking Around the World with Kinder - 2nd Grade little CHEFS:We put our knife skills to the test, slicing, chopping, and dicing a variety of topping and sauce ingredients for PIZZA!Each chef camper made their own personal pizza-- with any shape and combination of toppings they desired.Semolina flour is used as the bottom of the crust to ensure that it can be transferred from counter, to pizza paddle, to the sheet pan in the oven.We often tell students that their pizza dough must past the "wiggle test", ensuring that they have enough semolina flour underneath to prevent sticking to the counter.Nothing like a homemade, fresh-out-of-the-oven personal pizza... to end the amazing week with our littlest chefs. Their sense of wonder and excitement was such a joy to experience in the kitchen this week. We truly hope they continue in their open-mindedness with trying new foods and helping out with cooking at home! Hope to see you soon little ones!

Check out today's recipes, here!

Today we cooked "gigante=giant" burritos, inspired by the Mission neighborhood of SF!We went straight to the chopping block, cut up a rainbow of ingredients for burrito fillings: roasted zucchini, roasted red bell pepper, mango salsa, and fresh guacamole!We even prepared a large batch of rice and black beans, seasoned with a bounty of spices: cumin, paprika, chili powder, coriander, and salt!Chef campers watched with anticipated on how to assemble and roll up their GIANT Mission-style burritos!Now for the rolling!For dessert, we made "churro chips!" First, students cut whole wheat tortillas into chip shapes, coated with coconut oil, and tossed with the iconic churro cinnamon-sugar mixture.Warm out of the oven, these "churro chips" were a hit amongst these littlest of chefs!

View today's recipes, here!

​​Today's episode of "Cooking Around the World" with Kinder - 2nd Grade Chefs, our host "Chef Katy Jane" showed us how to prepare DUMPLINGS!All of the chef campers were captivated by the "live" demonstration of dumpling dough making and veggie chopping. They each had the chance to roll out the dough, cut into squares, place the veggie filling in the center, fold up into triangle-shaped dumplings, watch them boil in water and best of all, eat these chewy dumplings for their lunch! Oh, and a complimentary crunchy cucumber salad for balance!Continuing with the chewy theme, in the afternoon cooking session, our kitchen whipped up a batch of "mochi chocolate cupcakes".  Whilst baking, we took a break from cooking and listened to Chef Ty read us a story.The smell of warm chocolate cupcakes from the oven sneaked into the room and we followed our noses batch into the kitchen. Chef campers loved creating a simple glaze of cocoa powder, powdered sugar, and water to use for the tops of the chewy chocolate mochi cupcakes. It was the "icing on the cake"!

Chew on these chewy recipes, here!

Kids can cook! Day one of "Cooking Around the World", our staff counselors were blown away by the talent of this new batch of our littlest chefs: K-2nd graders!Each student helped prepare a rainbow assortment of veggies, using our plastic serrated training knives. Our sushi roll fillings included: red bell peppers, roasted Hodo Soy tofu, purple and orange carrots, ripe avocado slices, green cucumber sticks, and juicy yellow mango! They did an amazing job rolling up their individual rolls and an even more amazing job "cleaning their plates" at lunchtime. YUM!For the sweet treat cooking session, this "cookie dough bite" recipe was an instant success. The simplicity of the ingredients, process, and taste was a perfect introduction to "baking" for this age group.Oats, sunflower-seed-butter, dried cranberries, honey, cinnamon and vanilla-- oh and a handful of chocolate chips for the win! Chilled to perfection, consumed with excitement!

View today's delicious recipes, here!

Another "Friday Finale" with this group of blossoming home chefs!We celebrated the end of Baking + Pastry week by baking pizzas and cupcakes.Students chopped up a bounty of summer produce for their pizza toppings, as well as, fresh garden salad.Here are a few photos displaying the students' excitement towards presentation-- so neat!Check out those colors!In the afternoon, our groups whipped up a batch of coconut-milk based cupcakes.Each group made a simple glaze for topping: vanilla, lime, chocolate.What an amazing week with these little YUM Chefs! We truly hope they continue cooking at home and tasting new foods. Come back soon!

 

View today's recipes, here!

In Day Four of Baking + Pastry Week, we explored some iconic baked goods of New York City: bagels and pretzels!Chef campers learned about the bagel making process first hand! Each student formed the bagel dough into its traditional ring shape, then Chef Katy Jane assisted with the initial boiling step. Once boiled, we were able to sprinkle toppings, such as: sesame seeds, poppy seeds, and cinnamon sugar. While the bagels baked in the oven, our little YUM Chefs prepared an array of fixings: homemade sunflower-butter, plum and nectarine jam, herbed butter, and fresh veggies. It was so fun watching their enthusiasm and creativity shine whilst assembling their unique bagel sandwiches.For the afternoon session, our groups threw together a whole-wheat pretzel dough and let it rise. After doubling in size, the pretzel dough was ready to be shaped into its famous knot design. Chef campers had a great time with this dough!While the pretzels were turning golden brown in the oven, we took a little artistic break by making foodie-collages using recycled food magazines. The final product came out of the oven in perfect color, texture, and taste! Chef campers made a honey-mustard, as well as, a chocolate dipping sauce for these delightful pretzels.

Check out these recipes, here!

Shaping baguettes and folding galettes were our focus tasks today in Day Three of Baking + Pastry Week! Not to mention, refining our knife skills and plating techniques-- check out that spread!After shaping their baguettes and popping them into the warm oven, students were able to menu plan which sandwich fixings they wanted. When it came time to filling and assembling these adorable baguette sandwiches, they were prepared and excited!In our dessert cooking session, Chef Katy Jane demonstrated how to roll out galette dough, chop seasonal stone fruit for the filling, and how to fold up the dough edges.Now, it was their turn to show us their skills!Oh, how cute and rustic! Chef campers thoroughly enjoyed the buttery, flaky crust of these mini galettes, the tartness of the nectarines and plums, and the hand-held nature of this treat. Great work today!

Today's delicious French-inspired recipes are featured in Chef Leah's cookbook, available for purchase here!

Day Two of middle school Baking + Pastry week began harvesting herbs and salad greens in the KMS school garden. Chef campers brought in a bounty of oregano, fennel fronds, and basil for added flavor to their lunch!Once inside the kitchen, we made our own ricotta cheese?! Yes, it is quite a simple process with the freshest results: boiling whole milk and salt, adding the acid (lemon juice), watching the boiled milk begin to coagulate into solid curds, straining the curds from the liquid whey through a cheesecloth, capturing the fresh cheese curds, and seasoning with salt!Chef campers prepared empanada dough, summer veggie fillings, and the ricotta cheese, all from scratch.The best part may have been rolling out the dough and filling each empanada with a winning combo of fresh ricotta cheese, a veggie medley, and garden herbs.During our afternoon cooking session, we explored an entirely different type of dough for our Baklava dessert: phyllo dough. This flaky, puff-pastry-esque, dough is bought in a frozen form, thawed in the refrigerator, and pulled out to the working surface right when it is needed.Students loved layering the many sheets of phyllo dough, with generous amounts of brushed butter and a cinnamon-seed mixture. Once baked, each Baklava round was drizzled with the iconic honey syrup that perfectly sweetened this flaky-fun treat. It was a huge hit with these middle-school chefs!

Check out today's recipes, here!