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This term we’ve been lucky enough to once again work with our local high school, Castlebrae Community Campus, on our Food Truck Project! Our last project was such a success that the pupils requested that we come back and do another term of interactive and immersive food education.

This term, however, the Edinburgh Food Social food truck stayed at our HQ. Instead, the S2 pupils-turned-chefs decided to host a meal for P7 pupils from Niddrie Mill Primary School.

The invitation letter to Niddrie Mill Primary School

Over the course of the spring term, EFS Chefs, Kirsty and Lucy, spent each Friday morning with the S2 pupils – our Castlebrae cooks – discussing how to plan a food event and testing recipes for the menu. After a few weeks of creative cooking together, the Castlebrae cooks soon decided that they wanted an Italian-themed menu.

In addition to practising their dishes for the meal, each week was a chance for the S2s to learn more about where food comes from and develop their kitchen skills. While making apple cake, the Castlebrae cooks were shocked to learn that cinnamon comes from the bark of a tree and Lucy had to prove it to them by going to a botanical garden to take a picture of the tree in question.

The proof!

They were always enthusiastic to try new foods and play with innovative flavour combinations. They surprised us most with the unexpected sweet and salty combination of beetroot brownies and seaweed crisps!

A standout lesson came when Kirsty showed the S2s how to make different types of salad dressings. What we thought might be a less exciting lesson was actually a massive hit, and the Castlebrae cooks were excited to try all the different types of oil, vinegar, and spices in the EFS kitchen.

After this, maple syrup became a favourite ingredient: when learning how to make butter cream, one of the Castlebrae cooks added maple syrup and inspired Kirsty to make a maple Italian meringue cake for an upcoming catering order!

The Castlebrae cooks decided on lasagne with salad and garlic bread followed by apple cake and cinnamon whipped cream for their menu. They were so ambitious that not only did they make their own garlic butter, but they insisted on making their own flat breads from scratch too. Having tried parsley earlier in the term, they were also keen to add ‘green bits’ to the garlic bread to make it more colourful and tasty.

The final meal was a fantastic success. The Castlebrae cooks showed amazing teamwork and attention to detail; split into cooks and servers, half the s2s plated up the meal while the others set the table and served the p7s lemon-infused water.

Service was near-professional as Billie, Harley and Mia took the lead on plating the main course and sending it to the excited p7s. After seconds (and thirds), Sienna, Eva, Amber and Erin prepared the dessert course and made sure the leftovers were passed out to any hungry pupils and teachers.

The day ended on a high with the Castlebrae cooks giving Lucy and Kirsty a thank you dance performance in the kitchen, and Billie exclaiming that she wants to work as a chef.

We are so proud of all the work the S2s put into planning this meal and for pulling off such an incredible achievement. Thanks also to Castlebrae staff Miss Duncan and Miss Porter for all their support!