Bite of Brainfood Blog

Spice It Up!

Written by our Columbia Heights Intern Jessica Hulse Dillon 

 

This week in class we focused on spices and herbs!  While we’ve been using them in our recipes all along, we haven’t talked about them specifically.  

New Beginnings

Submitted by Intern Lauryn Woodruff

The fact that it is the end of January gives me a full mix of emotions. While I am sad that the holidays are over, I am excited to be back in class especially after this crazy weather here in the District. I look forward to what the remainder of this year will bring.

 

Facing Prejudice: Adultism 101

 If you ask most people if they are familiar with the concepts of sexism, racism, or homophobia, they would probably say that they are. And understanding that a prejudice exists is the first step in dissolving it. But if you ask those same people if they know what adultism means, many would probably look perplexed and shake their heads. Until recently, I would have too.

Meat, meat and more meat!

As we kick off the second half of the year, much to our student’s excitement, we have finally arrived at our chicken unit! 
 
“Now we can finally have meat in our dishes!” exclaimed one student.   But, not before learning about the proper safety and sanitation practices that go along with working with raw meat of course.  Participants learned about cross contamination as well as four different ways of telling if chicken is done and safe to eat.  
 
When cooking our delicious fake flake fried chicken (a healthy rendition of fried chicken) our students used crushed corn flakes as a crispy breading for the recipe that we baked in the oven! Then, it was on to making wings (personally my favorite class)! 
 

Seasons Greetings!

 This past Wednesday five different Brainfood classes came together to put on their very first special event of the school year – Brainfood Holiday Celebration!  

Leading up to the event participants worked hard to prepare food for 130 guests to ease preparations the day of the event.

Meet Kennisha: Brainfood Rock-Star

As the New Year looms closer and closer, it’s easy to focus on what’s ahead.   Our mind races with lists: long lists that are made up of gifts, recipes, and goals for the New Year.  I don’t know about you, but I find myself almost always “recycling” resolutions.  A fancy way of saying: I didn’t get to that one last year so I’ll just put it at the top of next year’s list.  

There are so many good reasons to look forward, though sometimes, I find myself wanting to look back. 

I want to look back on the tiny moments like a really great cup of coffee with a dear friend or the big ones, starting a new job in a new city.  These are the moments, both tiny and big, that make life sweet and challenging and worth celebrating.  

Risky Business

 I’ve been thinking about risk a lot this week.

What compels us to take risks or to avoid them? What makes a risk feel exhilarating and healthy, and what makes a risk feel too scary and overwhelming? Why are they particularly important for youth? Sure, risks can be bad. Adolescence is a time often negatively stereotyped as prone to dangerous risk-taking: underage drinking, drug use, reckless driving, and more. But this is an unfair depiction of teens and risk -- there’s so much more to the story

 

Brainfood Returns to the White House!

 Brainfood is honored to be invited back to visit by the White House Pastry Chefs Bill Yosses and Susie Morrison this holiday season! 

Nineteen Community MVP students, accompanied by Brainfood staffers, are helping out with holiday cookie decorating alongside White House chefs. One group of students, Stanley, Asya, Jennifer, Malik, and Subria, visited last week, along with Brainfood staffers Maeve and Nina. We have two more visits scheduled for the month of December. 

Brainfood groups have assisted at the White House 20 times in the past few years. We’ve been involved in the Congressional Luau, the 4th of July Barbecue, and Halloween, but the holiday cookie decorating is always especially magical. The White House hosts many receptions throughout the month of December, and the famed White House cookies are a tradition beloved by all the guests who attend. This holiday season, the White House pastry kitchen is estimating that they will produce 35,000 cookies -- all homemade and individually decorated! 

Garden Lessons: A Harvesting Journal from Our 2nd Year

 

This growing season had it all: gnarly 6 pound Armenian cukes, everlasting kale forests, Thai basil trees, and jewel-like figs and raspberries that were rewarded to the bravest harvesters and eagle-eyed gardeners.  As we blow one last farewell kiss to our second growing season on K St., we wanted to share some of our favorite garden lessons with you.  Here's what we learned while we were out playing in the dirt.

Crops: Fennel, Roma Tomatoes

Bring out the Knives!

This week wraps up our two week knife skills unit, and boy was it exciting! We kept things simple at first,cutting potatoes for homemade french fries and chopping carrots to simmer in our chicken noodle soup.  It was the perfect warm, hearty dish that made the thought of winter not so bad!  In addition to practicing our knife skills we had a little lesson in French vocabulary, teaching students how to properly do abatonnet, julienne, brunoise and chiffonade cut.  

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