Celebrity Chefs Create Cafeteria Cuisine for Kids

Chefs Michelle Bernstein and Kris Wessel show students eating healthy doesn't have to taste bad

Do you remember cafeteria food? Not good, right? 

Well, Miami-Dade County Public Schools are revamping their menus by enlisting the help of some local celebrity chefs. And inside the kitchen at Edison Senior High on Monday, two of Miami's Top Chefs were whipping up some delicious treats.

Michelle Bernstein owns Michy's and is a guest judge on Top Chef, while Kris Wessel owns Red Light restaurant in Miami. They took some time out to bake with students from Edison's Culinary program.

“To teach them other ways of making a lot of food they recognize, healthy but still tasty and very approachable” said Bernstein.

Like brownies with very little oil using dates and applesauce instead. When 10th grader Milfrid heard those ingredients, “I thought wow, this is going to taste pretty nasty, but it came out and it smelled real good.” Then he got a taste and vowed to make it this way at home.

Wessel hopes the culinary students he worked with make an impression on their schoolmates. 

“If the other students in the school are seeing an effort by their classmates to produce quality food, well that may drop one more barrier to trying the food,” he said.

The Miami-Dade County Public Schools Chef Partnership Program also works with the food service staff on a monthly basis. Penny Parham from the department of Food and Nutrition has a goal.

“We want our students to choose healthier foods. We want fresh fruits and vegetables and homemade food items to be their lunch of choice,” she said 

Not only are the chefs helping to create better food,  they're also providing some inspiration.

Just ask 11th grader Fabiola Charles: “I hope to become a chef like Miss Michelle.”
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