One of the essential life skills is being able to feed ourselves.
To this end we offer our students food skills and food technology. This is taught from year 7 through to year 11.
At KS4 the students are offered a choice of two courses to follow.
Jamie Oliver cooking skills; teaches the students advanced cooking skills and introduces them to experiment with products and tastes they would not normally encounter. They also learn budgeting,shopping, and planning meals.
At GCSE the students learn to design, make and develop cooked products for a client other than themselves. This is taught as a practical, through AQA and along with the written coursework, has a theory exam at the end of the year.
Galvin La Chapelle
On a snowy morning on Monday 26th February, I took 4 Year 10 students to Galvin La Chapelle Restaurant in Spital Square, London. We were greeted by Alex the General Manager of the restaurant who introduced us to the preparations taking place by front of house staff. He went on to talk about the building, the decor and the £19,500 bottle of wine on the menu!
Adjacent to the restaurant was the Galvin Brothers newest venture Galvin HOP: A gastropub which was a casual cafe-style restaurant, a complete contrast from the fine dining, one Michelin Star restaurant we were just standing in. At Galvin HOP we were given an insight in to the process in which they receive their beer from Pilsner, a small village in the Czech Republic. The barman also showed us the various different ‘pours’ which are offered by the bar. The students were very interested in the history and the process-but for obvious reasons, tastings were not an option.
We were now given the unique opportunity to sit down and speak to Head Chef Jeff Galvin MCA (Master of Culinary Arts) who gave us an insight to the industry and then invited us to dine. We ordered from the extremely appetizing menu with the burger and chips being a popular choice among the students and me going for one of the ‘specials’ in the way of squid and an asian slaw. As you can imagine when the dishes arrived the portion sizes were as big as the smiles on the boys faces. The flavour was spectacular too. After lunch, the boys were asking me for dessert- and the sudden realization set in my mind that there could be potentially a hefty bill about to be placed on the table with a receipt longer than my arm any moment now. So was obviously reluctant to offer out desserts. Fortunately, lunch was ‘on the house’ and the head waitress brought out 6 plates of various different desserts of her ‘favourites’ for us to dig in to. Relief had set in on the table and we could relax and enjoy the Blood Orange Cheesecake, Pecan Pie and Creme Brulee. These too were phenomenal.
In pairs, Chef invited us into the kitchen and allowed us to watch an active service. We watched chef call out the orders to his team and awaited the different elements to arrive at ‘the pass’. Chef gave the boys the task of trying to work out what he was plating up by using the menu. The boys enjoyed this part.
After a few pictures and farewells, we left the restaurant with Chef inviting our students back in the future for work experience or to just pop down on a Saturday.
A really good morning with some lovely food!
Head of Food & House System Co-ordinator