I recently concluded the growing season of our garden with the help of the fifth grade class of The Willow School. What an absolute pleasure! They were very helpful in the planting of the garden during the spring. The looks on their faces when they saw how everything had grown was awesome. As we entered the herb garden one of the children said it felt like walking into a jungle. The shiso, pineapple sage, and fennel were taller then the kids. To hear them talk about the flavors as they tasted all the different herbs was priceless. The fun we had digging our first crop of potatoes was fantastic. We dug up purple potatoes, fingerling potatoes, new potatoes, and red potatoes. I think they were all truly inspired to hopefully start their own garden one day.
One of the most rewarding parts of the experience for me was that all of the children learned something. My entire working career has always involved teaching. During high school it was as a swim instructor. During college I was a snow boarding instructor. Now as a chef I have the opportunity to teach the young cooks about cooking and the more seasoned cooks about running a kitchen and eventually becoming chefs in their own kitchen. It is a great feeling to be apart of the process when someone says “I got” or “I can do it”. To have this experience with the children of The Willow School was an incredibly gratifying.