Everyone is saying it. Days barley pass before another newspaper complains about it. Kids today have lost touch with were there food comes from. I think that's wrong. Young people haven't lost knowledge. They aren't born knowing everything and then forget it just to annoy us. It's our fault. We've failed them. We haven't been passing knowledge down. In some cases we've been failed too. Nobody gave us the knowledge, nobody certainly gave us any confidence, or money for ingredients, or time to cook, or decent kitchens. We're in a mess.
One of the ways I try to dig myself, and my community, out of it is to teach young people how to cook. I've held impromptu lessons with my brothers, roped kids walking through Occombe farm into a quick lesson on herbs and vegetables, I've helped at cookery classes for young people and grown-ups alike. One of the best things in my life is volunteering for Girlguiding UK. And you can be sure I've slipped some food into that.
Actually it's not all that hard to combine food and Guiding. It's one of the things we're famous for. Most, if not all of our planning also comes from suggestions from the girls and they suggest eating an awful lot. It's almost always the first thing mentioned when asking my Brownie unit what they want to do this term. We're always happy to oblige.
My Guides, who find it less cook to shout out 'cooookies' when we ask them what they want to do this term also enjoy cooking. And eating. I try to broaden their horizons with food. We've had thinking day with global pot lucks and I've taught the girls how to roll sushi. Guides is over 100 years old and we've cooked our own traditional food: smores, bananas with chocolate inside, sausages (veggie variation)... We've cooked with them over flames, on gasses, in kitchens. They've tried new things and cooked old favourites. They have fed themselves and each other. It's really cool to watch and be a part of.
|Our young leader demonstrates knife skills|
|Pastry gets pressed in cases and we learn the meaning of the word gently|
|We learn what half a tablespoon means and what happens when you overfill a tart|