Food competition sparks interest in the topic of hkk

Ghada Al-Amir (left) and Larissa Caspan (right) in Class 8C at Celtskolan in Trollhättan get tips from their teacher Sarah Lindbergh on how to chop vegetables quickly and protect their fingers at the same time.

On Friday, four schools will compete to see who has the best young chef in Trollhättan. Teacher Sarah Lindbergh says the prestigious competition has increased students’ interest in the subject of hkk.
– The students want to learn more about cooking, she says.

On Friday, Kockåttan, a cooking competition for 8th graders, will be decided during the “Taste Trollhättan” food and restaurant festival. Four different schools (two students from each school) in Trollhättan compete against each other with each dish inspired by street food. Ghada Al-Amer and Larissa Caspan in Class 8C represent Celtskolan as they were set up by Home and Consumer Studies teacher Sarah Lindbergh.

Why do you think it is good for students to compete in cooking?

– Preparing for the competition is a break from the usual teaching, which is more about teaching the basics of cooking. In the competition, students get an outlet for their creativity in a completely different way. The topic is street food, so we started by discussing what street food could be. The next step was to put together a recipe that would work together and then put them together in terms of time so that they could be prepared within 30 minutes.

They have practiced court many times now. How was it not?

– The first time they practiced, I pretended to be a judge and was with them the whole time to show which parts they would have deducted from points if it was a competition. Also, they kept working and were actually pretty depressed afterward. Next, we analyzed what they need to change next time. The second time things went a lot better and now they are happy and proud. It was amazing as a teacher to follow them on that journey from the first idea to the end result.

Only two out of eight compete in the school. How did the selection go?

Last spring, when they were in seventh grade, pairs of students willing to compete had to send in the recipes. We were a few of the teachers who reviewed the recipes and chose the most thoughtful dish we thought would have the best chance of winning. We did not notice any jealousy from the other students, on the contrary, they would be there on Friday cheering for their classmates. They are proud of their classmates and proud of their school.

Have you noticed that interest in home and consumer knowledge has increased as a result of your participation in the competition?

– yes I do. We have more frequent discussions about spices and how to change the basic recipe. Students generally love to cook and bake. Many watch cooking shows and follow food influencers on social media. Our sevens are already starting to question the competition for next year.

How does it motivate you as a teacher to have your students participate in competitions?

– I think “Taste Trollhättan” is a great fun event and it’s especially interesting that the 8th graders participated in it. It’s a lot of work, but it’s fun to be able to do something beyond traditional teaching and connect to the culinary profession, which is where I come from. Then I will show how fun, interesting and creative cooking can be!

Even if only two students were competing, would you notice if the competitive element made the other students more interested as well?

– Yes, there is more interest in the lessons and students want to know more about cooking. Many bring great interest from home, too. Al Jamaa School is a multicultural school with roots in the Middle East and I love this food myself. So sometimes students take charge and teach the lesson and show how to make Middle Eastern pizza, for example.

Have you introduced any of the “quiz methodology” into your daily classroom?

Yes, nowadays all eight can make their own recipe based on a basket of ingredients. It is a good way to train your sense of taste and understand how to make dishes. Then they usually realize why it is good to start from basic knowledge.

On Friday there will be a contest. How will it go?

– I’ve already seen them evolve a lot during this journey from the first preparations to the most recent briefing. Now the light remains, which I believe will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Imagine being 14 years old and being part of a real cooking competition! I hope they enjoy and that it will be a memory they can look back on fondly with their classmates, who will be there to encourage them.

Here you can catch up on the competition starting at 1.30pm on Friday, September 9th.

What is Chef’s Eight?

The aim of the competition is to inspire young people to choose a culinary profession. The competition is led by the Swedish Chefs Union and is conducted as a “real” cooking competition, based on international competition rules. A professional jury evaluates the students’ achievements.

Sarah Lindbergh

age: 38 years.

profession: Home and Consumer Studies teacher at Sylteskolan in Trollhättan, an F-9 school.

background: She worked as a chef before training as an F-6 teacher and eventually as a Home and Consumer Studies teacher.

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