Stephanie Izard on “Awesome” Chef in the Classroom Experience

March 24, 2011

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Top Chef’s Stephanie Izard has a message for Chicago culinary professionals thinking about getting involved in Chef in the Classroom, a day when chefs bring veggie tastings, cooking demonstrations and healthy eating lessons to kids across the city:

“We’re all super busy and it’s not always easy to find time to get involved in things like this,” she said. “But working with kids, seeing how happy it makes them and what a difference healthy eating makes in their lives — you’ll see how awesome it is and be happy you made the time.”

Izard took part in Chef in the Classroom 2010, visiting a local elementary school to connect with children over smoothies and veggie samples. She read a book to the students, made fruit smoothies with them, and brought vegetables “that look cool or pretty” for students to taste. She and her assistant were overwhelmed with the positive reaction and autograph requests from young kids who were excited not because they knew of her restaurant, her TV experience or recent James Beard nomination but rather “because we were adults visiting them and bringing them snacks!”

“It was just really fun,” she said. “And the kids actually seemed very interested in what we had to say” about healthy eating.

Her message to the students? “Don’t be afraid to try new things! Give healthy food a chance.”

Kudos to Chef Stephanie Izard for her efforts to show kids across Chicago the fun, cool, interesting side of healthy eating! To learn more about how you can get involved with Chef in the Classroom, click here.