Thursday, 10 April 2014

Week 10 Term 1 2014

Our last week of cooking for this term. We made:

Jewelled Couscous
Pumpkin and Spinach Salad
Pear and Parmesan Salad
Zucchini and Onion Pizza
Pasta with Caramelised Onions

Aimee did a fantastic job making jewelled couscous, she really enjoyed using the dicer! Jason, Harvey and Christopher also did excellent work to make this dish on their days.

Lots of great pizza making this week. Litiani impressed us all when she made the pizza dough almost completely independently. Tomas and Josie were impressive with their plating up and serving. And on Thursday Frank and Bella made a great team and were joined by Christopher too!

Brandon, Jack B, Thomas B and Stephen B worked really well making the pumpkin and spinach salad.


Our pear and parmesan salad was really good this week, well done especially to Ryan and Jamie for their contribution to this on Thursday.

Our pasta makers were excellent – well done Jed, Aidan and Vinnie! And what a great job Zach did with this dish too – it was lovely to have his mum and grandmother join us for our kitchen session. And thank you to Tom D who came and assisted with the pasta sauce after he had completed his work on couscous.

Jamie did a great job setting the table this week – well done!

Great work by Blue Class in the garden this week – Jacob and Aidan composting and planting.

I would like to finish with a quote from Stephanie Alexander’s autobiography “A Cook’s Life” when she talks about why she started the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program.

“I was certain that if you offer a child the widest possible range of food from the earliest possible age in a loving environment, if you eat together as often as possible, and demonstrate your own enjoyment of flavour and texture and conviviality, that child will eat well forever, and will enjoy being with others around a table for the rest of his or her life.”

How fortunate we are that Stephanie had this belief and put it into practice with her program.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Week 9 Term 1 2014

A new menu this week:

Zucchini and Onion Pizza
Pear and Parmesan Salad
Pumpkin and Spinach Salad
Jewelled Couscous
Pasta with a Caramelised Onion Sauce


I broke my rule of always having at least one item on the menu that any vegetable can go into. Not sure why I forgot to do this, but I must remember in future – it meant that we couldn’t use some of the produce that is currently available in the garden. Never mind, the students happily eat the produce straight from the garden anyway (especially the lovely cherry tomatoes!).

Everyone is settling back into the cooking and gardening routine now – our fifth week of the kitchen-garden program this week – and the food is getting better and better!

Our pasta this week has been excellent – really good pasta and a delicious onion sauce. Well done to Aimee, Aaron, and Harvey – great participation.


Excellent cooking by Jack Green making the zucchini fritters last Friday.


Special mention must be made of Christopher in Gold Class who worked at every stage of the pasta making this week – and it was really delicious!

It was good to have a change from ‘Pizza of the Imagination’ this week - as usual all was eaten almost before reaching the table! Pizza makers this week included Jason, Tomas, Sam, Ryan P., Jacob and Kalani – well done boys!


The pear salad was delicious this week – very light and a beautiful delicate flavour – excellent production by Litiani, Bella and Darcy. It was good to see Darcy using his communication device whilst grating the cheese.


Jewelled Couscous was a new recipe for us this week. We have made Jewelled Quinoa in the past, but the quinoa is becoming so expensive I decided to adapt the recipe by using couscous instead. If anything it was even better. The combination of fresh mint and coriander, together with the lemon juice, was delicious; the addition of dried cranberries added a nice sweet balance against the lemon juice. Lizzie worked really well on this recipe on Wednesday. Stephen B. was a great help with this recipe on Thursday – we decided that it needed more colour and he was most enthusiastic about adding some chopped pumpkin!

The pumpkin and spinach salad is a good old favourite. We harvested pumpkins and spinach from the garden for this dish.  Thomaz was a great help with this on Tuesday, opting to assist with this recipe rather than the salad. On Wednesday Shelby and Jayden J. did a fantastic job – great chopping from Jayden!


In the garden Thomas and Kalani worked hard with Michael planting seedlings and giving them a good gentle water. Dominic and Thomas B. were also great gardeners, working well with Michael to plant broad bean seeds.

Lovely harvesting by Bella also – and she was most interested in the snail that she found!


Frank enjoyed feeding the worms in our worm farm this week.


Good watering by William – his favourite garden job!


Jason was a great help with the chickens and assisting with harvesting. One of our chickens has been ‘broody’ almost all term. If she is still like this in the last week of term I will put some fertile eggs under her and hopefully we will get some chicks hatching during our first week back next term!


And well done to Daniel who harvested some delicious cherry tomatoes.

Thanks once again to our wonderful volunteers:

Sophie and Marilyn last Friday;
Jacqui on Tuesday and Thursday;
Lisa on Wednesday; and
Jacqui, Linda, Mel and Sophie on Thursday

-      I must get some volunteer photos!!

Next week will be our last cooking week. During the last week of term (which is actually just Tuesday and Wednesday) I will be planning for next term and doing a big clean-up of the kitchen.

And I am pleased to say that my second attempt at the pizza oven was good!!