The junior high FACS class received a tasty treat earlier this week when professional chef and Hopkins alumni Corey Meier stopped by the classroom. Meier demonstrated how to cook a mac n’ cheese with arugula, corn and a hint of truffle, followed by a crispy tofu ramen.
“What an experience for the students,” said Stefanie Zoss, junior high FACS teacher. “I think they loved it, I’m sure a lot of these kids have never had tofu before or Meier’s version of mac n’ cheese.”
Zoss asked Meier to come into the class in honor of their new unit about cooking healthy on a budget. She wanted to give the students an opportunity to connect with an adult outside of the classroom to give them a perspective of what they could do with cooking skills in the professional world.
Meier is a professional chef and partner at Create Catering & The Dining Studio in Northeast Minneapolis. As a chef, Meier focuses on good ingredients, learns how to interact with them and learns how to cook them perfectly.
In addition to showing students how to cook healthy on a budget, Meier chose to show students that standard dishes don’t have to be made in a typical way. One of his cooking mottos is that he will never give someone an unfamiliar dish and unfamiliar preparation at the same time.
“I will always give you a familiar dish in an unfamiliar way or an unfamiliar ingredient in a familiar way because it’s the easiest way to springboard someone into trying something new and introducing it in a positive way,” Meier said.
Developing partnerships between community members and the school is part of the Hopkins Public Schools Vision 2031 strategic plan and it falls in line with the junior high International Baccalaureate program objective to create connections in the real world.