This semester, I’m teaching an International Cooking class to a private school, with an amazing group of teens. What a privilege it is to have the opportunity to educate young minds who are about to experience the world on their own. I think dealing with teenagers is completely different than dealing with little ones, and yet some things are very similar. You still have things to think about and worries about kitchen safety; but along with that comes a room full of fun conversations and creative minds.
A while back, I used to be concerned that my classes were loud and uncontrolled (especially when dealing with littler ones.) But as I observed my classes through the past year, I noticed that it was me having the wrong expectations on the class. Everything is in order, kitchen safety is always enforced and rules are set. My fears resided within because I thought things had to be quiet, or they weren’t learning. How wrong I was!
What did I do wrong? Compared myself to an art class (and a teacher I admire, you know who you are!) An art class! Creating art, is quiet because the person has to use a unique part of their brain to achieve their goal on the paper or clay. Cooking is a different form of art and requires a different kind of thinking. Ever think about how you behave while creating a dinner? Kids running around, people talking to you, etc. (I reserve the right to say that if you are performing a work of art on a cake, that is completely different… then quiet must resume.)
Better to compare myself to a real kitchen! Order up!! Active and energized! And THAT is how my classes are run, and I believe the kids love it too. I see their faces change to being relaxed and excited to be there. Is it perfect each time for every student? Do pigs fly? No. I have high expectations for my students, but not superior ones! Even as a teacher, I also have failures and mistakes.
To kick off the New Year, we started with a very basic, but ever popular recipe. Hummus! I had two varieties for the students to work on. One was the Sun Dried Tomato Hummus, which I’m showing you today, and the other was Greek Hummus (which I reserve that recipe for my students.)
Sun Dried Tomato Hummus
- 1 can Chickpeas (drained into a separate bowl)
- 3 Tbsp. Sun Dried Tomatoes (packed in oil)
- 2 tsp. parsley
- 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
- 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
Blend in a food processor. I find it comes out pretty thick, and add some of the bean juice to the hummus, OR you can just add water, 1 Tbsp at a time and mix to your desired consistency.