Brainfood in the White House Kitchen (and Kitchen Garden)

The Obama administration is making good on their promise to open up the White House to their neighbors. The latest group to enjoy the People’s House is Brainfood, shop a non-profit youth development organization in Washington, vitamin DC. Using food as a tool, Brainfood builds life skills and promotes healthy living in a fun and safe environment.

According to the Brainfood website:

Over the past 2 weeks Brainfood participants and staff visited the White House and got a chance to learn from the White House chefs while helping prepare food for the Congressional Luau, Staff Picnic, and 4th of July picnic.

Using the kitchen skills they learned in Brainfood’s after-school program, 17 teenagers spent five days assisting White House Executive Chef Cristeta Comerford, Pastry Chef Bill Yosses and Assistant Pastry Chef Susie Morrison and their staffs as they prepared food for several hundred White House guests. Eager to demonstrate their culinary talents, the Brainfood youths prepped burgers, shucked corn, glazed ribs, and prepared desserts and garnishes.

Jane Black of the Washington Post tagged along with Brainfood and filed this report, which includes a planting update and a sneak preview of what Sam Kass, White House Food Initiative Coordinator is planning next:

Kass also treated the students with a trip to the garden. (On the way, they saw the Obamas’ dog, Bo.) Kass pointed out the lettuces and cabbage grown from seeds he’d procured from Monticello. He explained that the White House beehives are strapped down; otherwise the presidential helicopter would blow them over when it lands. Before heading back to the kitchen, they planted Sungold and Brandywine tomatoes.

The tour was a variation of the kind the White House plans to offer twice weekly to visiting school groups. Kass is developing a curriculum that aims to teach young students about how vegetables grow in the garden and how they can grow their own.

Photos:  Top photo: Sam Kass, far left, shucks corn with members of Brainfood; Andre Monroe, 17, Stephanie Blyskal, volunteer, and Carina Gervacio, program coordinator. By Melina Mara, The Washington Post.   Bottom three photos courtesy Brainfood, including Sam Kass at the “biocycler.

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