Students from Vermont Day School in Shelburne recently had a full farm-to-table experience to learn about “the importance of eating locally and seasonally, from a nutritional and environmental perspective,” according to teacher Brea Schwartz.
Their field trip took them to Guild Tavern restaurant in South Burlington for a kitchen tour with Philip Clayton, executive chef/owner of the Farmhouse Group. At Bread and Butter Farm in Shelburne, they harvested vegetables and helped with farm chores, including feeding pigs and planting purple kale seedlings.
Returning to school, students worked in small groups to create or adapt a recipe with vegetables they collected.
“It was exciting to see the creativity and ingenuity of our students chefs as they brainstormed a variety of uses for butternut squash, sweet potatoes and pumpkin, and to watch their hard work come together as they wrote recipes,” explained teacher Jonnie Moorhead. “The students were just as brave when it came to tasting their classmates’ culinary creations.”
Creations ranged from sweet to savory, from beet and berry smoothies to swiss chard and potato gratin. Teachers said the field trip and project was part of an all-school focus on creativity, problem-solving and collaborative skills in a real-world context.