Chef Barrington Douglas with some of his students
More than 20 students from across Kirklees, aged from 12 to 16, were able to develop a wide range of culinary skills, explore the economic and environmental impact of sourcing ingredients and pick up knowledge about foods from different cultures.
The ‘Cooking Super Learning Day’ was organised by Kirklees Council’s Extended Learning Service and the University of the First Age (UFA).
The UFA is a national educational charity dedicated to learning opportunities for young people and has a flourishing, long-term partnership with the council.
Three leading chefs attended as role models – Barrington Douglas of Discovery Bay restaurant (focusing on Caribbean cuisine), Prett Tejura of Curry Cuisine restaurant (focusing on Indian cuisine) and Simon Hallas, Executive Chef at Kirklees College (focusing on local and seasonal ingredients).
The fun day included workshops and opportunities to work with the chefs before everyone joined together to sample, and talk about, the dishes they had prepared.
Cllr Cath Harris, Kirklees Council Cabinet member for Children and Families, said: “This was a wonderful opportunity to learn more about food.
“As well as cooking with the experts, the youngsters discussed the dishes they were preparing and looked beyond and behind what eventually goes on the plate.
“Being able to cook is an important life skill, but they also gained an understanding of different ingredients and cultures and maybe some will feel passionate enough to pursue this sort of career.
“And as the council promotes a healthy lifestyle among all communities and age groups, this really was an excellent initiative.”