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Chef For A Day

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

What will I be when I grow up? Hartford Central School 4th and 5th graders asked themselves that question when exploring different options for their Career Day recently. They voted to learn about being a chef and visited the Southern Adirondack Education (SAEC) on May 24. Culinary arts students and Chef Charlie Jones welcomed them to their kitchens where they talked about food safety, sanitation, consistency of final product and making customers happy.

Chef Jones explained the difference between being a cook and being an artist.

He showed the Hartford students the medals that chefs earn. He explained, that chefs and culinary arts students spend so much time training and preparing, but their end product is gone very quickly.

“We eat it,” said Jones.

The medals in competition are a reminder of a chef’s achievements.

The young chefs made their own hats, not just for fun, but to ensure their hair was tucked away and out of the food. They paired up with chef instructors to rotate through work stations to bake mini pizzas and cookies. At the end of the visit they learned about what made the older students special, their culinary interests and career goals.

When asked about her favorite part of the day, fourth grader Lauren Miller said, “I liked putting the sauce, cheese and pepperoni on the pizzas.”

Another 4th grader, Rylei said “I liked it all. It was really fun.”

Throughout the visit, as students were prepping and baking, Chef Jones Chef told them they were preparing for guests. Every few minutes he gave them a time check with instructions and reminders. By the end of the visit, he told them that they were ready for their guests. It turned out they were the guests! They sat down and had a family meal, a tradition in the restaurant business.

Chef Jones pointed out that the day went smoothly because of a whole crew of support staff behind the scenes. Working as a team is critical in the culinary field.

Some inquisitive minds asked about the other programs at SAEC, such as Welding, Automotive Technology, Power Sports Technology, Cosmetology and others. Principal Rick Horn gave them an overview of all the programs available at the center and said he looked forward to welcoming them back in a few years on a tour in 10th grade or as SAEC students!

Photo Gallery

8 Hartford students baking pizzas with CTE students

Hartford 4th graders bake pizzas under the supervision of CTE chef instructors.

3 4th graders and a CTE student

Chef instructors shows 4th graders how to make chocolate chip cookies.