“Play with your food, try new ingredients, make weird stuff, get messy, be creative and don’t worry about whether or not what you are making is going to be a masterpiece. It is only food.”

This was a comment by Arthur MacMaste on the post  “Celebrity Chefs Like Gordon Ramsay Make Cooking Cool for Boys Too“.

One of the appeals of cooking class is that, unlike math and English, the answers are not black and white, and there are fewer rules. Cooking is also a good way for students to be creative, and share their creations with classmates, friends, and family.

Arthur MacMaste said:

As a Chef with 20 years’ experience, I’d like to chime in.

Kudos to your son and all the other kids in this article for learning the art of cooking.  Learning to cook at a young age is an incredibly important life skill that will only serve them well as adults.  Being an adult who is able to cook means they will generally be more self-sufficient, healthier, and….attractive.  I mean common, what is sexier than having a date where someone cooks a great meal for you!

The two most important culinary skills that I try and foster in everyone I mentor are confidence and a sense of fun.  Play with your food, try new ingredients, make weird stuff, get messy, be creative and don’t worry about whether or not what you are making is going to be a masterpiece. It is only food.  The more time spent playing in a kitchen with food, the more confident a child will become.

My only cautionary comment is that you need to careful looking at TV celebrity chefs for inspiration. While it makes for great entertainment, what you seen on TV is not the reality of daily life in a professional kitchen.  Professional kitchens are chaotic and stressful environments where cooks generally work very long hours for generally not a lot of money.  Luckily, most chefs do not do the job for the paycheck but do it because they love creating something that gives others pleasure.

Also, monster chefs like Gordon Ramsay are a dying breed. There is no reason why he needs to be such an a**hole to get the chefs working under him to be excellent. I have worked with chefs like him and I have to say that my quality of product was worse because of their attitude towards me. It is better to be respected than feared!

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  1. wellokaythen says:

    There’s something to be said for kids being able to make stuff with their own hands, which is something that our society has lost somewhat over the past few generations. There’s something very good for you about being able to create something on your own, or something that you envisioned and then made happen in a concrete way. Food is just one example.

    As schools make more cuts in arts, music, creative writing, and other creative activities, I think you’ll see kids’ interest in cooking increase. There’s something basic about the desire to create stuff.

    I think that’s why there are so many popular TV shows that show people making things, from meals to motorbikes. There’s something appealing about the creative process, especially to people who don’t get a chance to be creative in their jobs. I think seeing people make things based on a creative process is very appealing on a basic human level. I love watching those shows where people make custom motorcycles, and I don’t really have any interest in motorcycles (and I generally dislike the people on those shows). I just think it’s cool to see something go from an idea to a finished product.

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