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Artisans of the future learn at school

Posted on March 26, 2013

Latest update from Sally McGowan, Education Officer:

This month I started working in schools, finally getting out and passing on the Local Food and artisan food message to young people and staff!

A long snowy drive on the Monday morning found me in Cotmanhay, Ilkeston working with the students of Ormiston Enterprise Academy. I worked with two groups of students for three days teaching them about bread and the function of ingredients.

On the first day we learnt how to make white bread and in between weighing out ingredients, wielding our bowl scrapers and kneading the dough we discussed different types of flour, the function of yeast and what gluten was. The students rolled their sleeves up and produced some great loaves of bread and all seemed to really enjoying the baking although a few ‘didn’t enjoy the washing up’!

On the second day we moved on to making a traditional tealoaf where we looked again at function of ingredients, the different types of flour and how this was a healthier option to a fruit cake. The students, as predicted, particularly enjoyed the tealoaf because ‘it is so nice and easy to make’.

On our final day we put our bread making knowledge and skills to the test with me taking a back seat with the teaching and let the students choose their own ingredients to add to their bread to make flavoured breads. They put their imagination to the test and made cheese and ham, fruit and cinnamon, ginger, garlic and herb flavoured breads.

In the evening of the final day staff and students alike joined me in the food room for an after school club bread baking session. The staff decided to dress up and pose for the camera to everyone’s enjoyment and once again produced some great flavoured breads.

I had an amazing time working with the students and staff of Ormiston Enterprise Academy and the students left some great feedback saying they ‘now weren’t as scared of the oven’, ‘ they had fun and gained confidence’ and ‘wanted to make bread at home’.

A great result and next month I will be working with different schools in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Chesterfield making sausages and ice-cream and also talking about careers in the food industry.

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