This week, the Petits Chefs were lucky to welcome Adell Shneer back to the school for one of our favourite guest chef sessions – decorating Adell’s delicious sugar cookies. This was her TWELFTH visit to to work with the boys in cooking club – we couldn’t be happier to have her willing to return year after year!
Adell always brings an element of learning to her sessions – she ran through everything from the colour wheel…
… to how to make the cookies and the icing, how to mix the icing, how to pipe borders and finally, how to decorate inside those borders! The boys started by choosing colours to mix…
The silence that descends on the room when the boys are working with icing and cookies is always quite astounding. You’ve never seen such focus! I always love to see the boys practising important life skills such as turn taking, patience and manners during this session (there are only so many colours and sometimes they have to wait to use the colour of their choice!). It’s really interesting to see how a very tangible outcome (x amount of decorated cookies) produces some of the best work I see from the boys…
I realised this week that some of these boys have been decorating cookies with Adell for 4 years! One of my Grade 6s remarked on how “it’s still challenging” but that he “knows what [he’s] doing now” – a nod to the fact that sometimes this intricate, precise work CAN be challenging for the younger boys and sometimes the cookies don’t always end up looking as the boys intend. I liken this to when I was little and used to cut my dolls’ hair. You know how plastic hair doesn’t cut straight and you keep on cutting and cutting and all of a sudden the doll doesn’t have any more hair to cut (no? It’s just me? Ok then…). Well, with cookies and royal icing, it can end up looking like, well, a sugar cookie iced with brown icing (because when you try to “fix” things, all the colours mix together and turn, well, brown…). Yeah, a fair number of cookies like that have made their way out of cooking club (and sometimes directly into tummies!) over the years. What I – and the students – notice is that visit after visit, this is something that gets easier and this week was a bit of a lightbulb moment as a few of them noted how much progress they’d made!
Thanks Adell for coming to work with the boys again – we always learn so much (yup, even me!).
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