Chefs Consortium creates and supports initiatives to educate youth about healthy, local food and environmentalism by partnering with other non-profit community organizations.
Traveling Taste Buds is an educational program series created by chefs and educators to encourage wellness and healthy eating in children and youth groups by providing hands-on cooking demonstrations in classrooms and school gardens. The goal of the series is to teach youth about the cycle of food as it relates to a garden—from how fruits and vegetables are grown and harvested to how they are cleaned and prepared.
As part of the educational series, cooking demonstrations take place year round in classrooms and gardens throughout New York City and the Hudson Valley. One of the core objectives of our curriculum is to educate youth about the seasonal variety and availability of fruits and vegetables (locally, regionally and globally) and how to cook healthy recipes that will positively impact their health and the health of their families throughout their lives, at any time of the year.
The New York Community Soup Project is an interactive soup demonstration that teaches students about cooking – from the school garden to the soup pot. Demonstrations are scheduled at elementary and middle schools that feature school gardens. Students harvest and wash vegetables from their garden and a chef guides them through the process of making delicious and seasonal garden vegetable soups. After the vegetables have been harvested, water is brought to a boil in a large pot and the students begin walking around the pot in a clockwise circle. Beginning with chopped onions, celery and carrots, each student continues to add ingredients to the soup as he or she walks past the simmering pot. Beans, lentils, tomatoes, summer and winter squash, chilies, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper and herbs are among the many ingredients that develop into the delicious and harmonious flavors of the finished soup. The goal of the demonstration is to foster unity, team building skills, fundamental cooking skills, knowledge of plant science as it relates to growing and harvesting vegetables, comprehension of chemistry and mathematics related to measuring and cooking ingredients, and an understanding of the economic, environmental, and health benefits of eating locally grown food.