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Sylvia Center Farm Team Cooking Class | Great Performances


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Sylvia Center Farm Team Cooking Class
by Jenn So, Sylvia Center Internal Operations and Communications Manager

This week, a group of more than 30 enthusiastic Sylvia Center supporters had the unique experience of taking a cooking class in the Great Performances kitchen in an exclusive event presented by the Farm Team, TSC’s young professionals council. In this rare opportunity to experience the bustling catering kitchen behind the scenes, guests cooked and mingled for a good cause—all proceeds from the evening went to support Sylvia Center programming at the Red Hook Community Center.

The class was led by seasoned GP chefs and assisted by Sylvia Center chef instructors and teen students. The GP chefs led groups of participants through Asian-inspired recipes at four different workstations. Items on the menu for the evening were: Thai Green Papaya Salad, Sichuan Dan Dan Noodles, Korean Japchae, and Vegetarian Summer Rolls. Our teen students acted as sous chefs at each station, helping lead guests through the production of each recipe.

After all of the dishes were prepared, guests moved to Mae Mae Cafe next door to enjoy their freshly-crafted feast. One of our ExpandED* Teen graduates and current chef assistants, Alex Irizzary, spoke to guests about his experience working with The Sylvia Center. He said that his experience with The Sylvia Center had taught him so much and has significantly grown his passion for the culinary field. For the remainder of the evening everyone sat down together to enjoy the delicious food they created. The night ended with a sweet surprise from Great Performances Executive Chef Rob Valencia: Mango Truffles and Passion Fruit Pavlova. 

*In the ExpandED Apprenticeship Program, students develop high-level culinary skills and learn to prepare healthy recipes from diverse cuisines. In addition to learning culinary skills, student learn about current food system issues through a tailored curriculum developed by The Sylvia Center. After completing the 60-hour apprenticeship, students are placed in jobs at after-school programs and summer camps to teach healthy cooking classes to young children.

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