Kids, Science and Cooking at Harvard
During the last two weeks, on his days off, Chef Jason Bond spent time acting as “camp counselor” of sorts, to a group of 20 school-aged children enrolled in a summer program at Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. The two-week summer course is an offshoot of the “Science and Cooking” program run by the SEAS. Harvard designed the course, in conjunction with the children’s cooking magazine Chop Chop, to help children learn more about science by using examples and lessons from the world of cooking.
According to an article in the Harvard Gazette, “In their 10 days on campus, students would learn from scientists, mathematicians, and rock-star chefs about pickling, emulsion, fermentation, and more. They would be responsible not only for making their own lunches, but for prepping ingredients and cleaning up after themselves in the kitchen.”
Chef Bond has been an active consultant for the Science and Cooking program since its inception and was glad to participate with this new, slightly younger, group of students. Other instructors in the two-week course were Bill Yosses, White House Executive Pastry Chef and Lourdes Fiore Smith, a cheese maker from Somerville MA and owner of Fiore Di Nonno.
Chef Bond talks about the experience.
What was your role with the students during the “Kids, Science and Cooking” program?
JB, “I backed up the scientist who gave the daily lecture by offering how the food we were cooking related to the day’s subject – fermentation, microbes, foams, etc. I also gave them instruction and helped them cook several recipes each day.”
What did they learn from working with you?
JB, “We taught them knife skills, how to cook a few dishes, how to write a recipe and scale it up or down.”
Did you enjoy science when you were a student?
JB, “Absolutely. And I still do.”
What is the value of the SEAS’ “Science and Cooking” program, and why do you like being involved with them?
JB, “They have found a great way to both get kids excited about the sciences and also give them an introduction to good healthful food. They are giving exposure to these topics and laying the groundwork for forming good habits in the future.”
Read an article and see a video created about the 10-day course here: Harvard Gazette