San Pedro High students, Amy Andrews and Chelsea Bonitz (above) andJasmine Rodriguez, Anthony Hernandez, and Arabella Salceda prepping for gourmet lunch in a professional kitchen at the Los Angeles Yacht Club
Six of my culinary students and I had a great day cooking at the Los Angeles Yacht Club – thanks to Chef Joel Orner (right photo).
Chef Orner and two of his young chefs were kind to open up the kitchen doors to six of my top students, all of whom after high school want to attend culinary school: Amy Andrews, Chelsea Bonitz, Jasmine Rodriguez, Arabella Salceda, Jennifer Sweet, and Anthony Hernandez. All of my students were thrilled to have the experience of working in a professional kitchen;
After a short introduction, the students got right into the business of the day -- making lunch for themselves and their teacher! While future pastry chefs Amy and Chelsea worked on whipping up the dessert for the da, the others got right to work making Carrot Ginger Soup, Potatoes au Gratin, Steamed Asparagus, and Beef Tenderloin.
Chef Orner gave the students cooking tips as well as some honest truth about working in the Food Service industry. He told the students that being a chef is a lot of long hours, weekend and holiday work, and many dirty pots and pans to clean. However, he loves his job and wouldn't want to do anything else.
He advised the students to do whatever they have the
passion for and they will be happy and successful. The students got
to ask questions of all three chefs and get an idea about culinary
school and work in the industry.
After the wonderful lunch, each student got to "torch" their own
dessert - a tremendous Chocolate Chip Creme Brulee. Then it was time
to clean the kitchen and do the dishes before going back to SPHS.
Chef Orner and his staff were generous and gracious. Every student
agreed that this was a fantastic experience.
What I liked best: my students got to cook for me!