At a recent Focus Inner Circle event in Berlin, star chef Jamie Oliver discussed his next ambitious project: to halve childhood obesity in Britain by 2030.
Meine Familie & ich continues its ambitious workshop project in German schools after the successful first round at the European School in Bornheim near Bonn. Europe’s biggest food magazine has taken up the cause of inspiring young people to get involved in culinary matters hands-on themselves. There is no need to grab a ready-made meal, even if everything is meant to be done quickly and easily today. At Korbinian-Aigner-Gymnasium in Erding, cooking is fun, does not take up a lot of time, and healthy food is really delicious when Jörg Götte, head chef of Meine Familie & ich, is in the kitchen with the kids.
No instant chicken stock…
13 students from grades six to eleven had gathered at the school kitchen to create a three-course menu together on Thursday. They had to produce curry muffins, chicken stew with vegetables and noodles, as well as crunchy candies with quark filling and fruit salad. “The girls and boys have really thrown themselves into it today”, says Jörg Götte, visibly pleased. “They were all very concentrated and pitched in brilliantly: whether chopping things, kneading dough, cutting up the chickens or tidying up the kitchen and washing up after having lunch together, which is part of the job as well, after all”, the chef says, full of praise.
Peeling a melon like a professional
The teachers Barbara Brunner and Alexander Korfhage, who offer cooking courses as an elective subject in the school kitchen themselves, had asked Meine Familie & ich to come to Erding. They are pleased with the very successful morning: Everyone had a lot of fun, the food tasted great and, in terms of learning something new, not only the kids benefited. “I picked up one or two tricks from Jörg as well”, says Alexander Korfhage, laughing. “I’ve no idea why I have been peeling and deseeding a melon in such a complicated way so far. Jörg’s method is very simple, a lot quicker and more of the melon is left to be eaten as well.”
A bit of humor makes all the difference
Above 1000 meters in the mountains and in the kitchen you generally use the informal German “Du”, as Jörg Götte says. With him, teaching and learning works on an equal footing. A sense of humor is the main ingredient in the recipe, giving it the extra something: “In order to get children and young people excited about cooking, you simply need to have fun yourself and not take yourself too seriously. This is not a heart surgery, after all”, says Jörg Götte. Chief editor Gaby Höger had fun as well, insisting on looking over the shoulder of the 12 to 18-year-old junior chefs to see what was in their pots.
„I’m totally pleased to see that our workshop concept is received so well. This means we’ve achieved our goal. Word gets around quickly at the school, of course, and other students are motivated to choose cooking courses as an elective subject as well for instance. And school directors are inspired to perhaps extend the activities at their schools in this area."
Gaby Höger, chief editor
Both the workshop concept and the sumptuous results his students achieved were certainly to the liking of Hans-Joachim Fuhrig, director of the Korbinian Aigner Gymnasium, who found them “absolutely delicious”. To be continued…