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Ward of the state experience a day in the life of a chef

Published:Thursday | January 12, 2017 | 12:00 AM
The completed dish- candied yams, sorrel glazed ham, curried mutton, rice and peas, mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables.
Chef de partie Juleiann Reid gives some basic pointers to Timothy on his first step to realising his dreams of becoming a chef.
Timothy plating his meal under the guidance of Reid.

Nervous yet excited, Timothy's* face lit up when he received his chef's jacket, pants and headgear. Minutes later, the 15-year-old was decked out in chef garb, eyes bright and ready for his tutorial in the Kaluga Kafe kitchen.

The ward of the state from Sunbeam Boys' Home in St Catherine was selected by Adrian Samuda, CEO of Kaluga Group, to experience 'A day in the life of a chef' at Kaluga Kafe, his casual-dining spot in Old Harbour.

Having sponsored Sunbeam Boys' Home at two consecutive Christmas treats since opening business in April 2014, Samuda decided to sponsor a child from the home, and help him realise his dream of becoming a chef. To bolster the experience, Samuda will be providing an annual bursary of $50,000 for two years for Timothy's education, as well as mentorship for the youngster.

As Timothy stepped into the kitchen, he was updated on his mission for the day to create a gourmet take on a traditional Jamaican Christmas dinner. Samuda selected a combination of Jamaican favourites with various flavours in keeping with the festive season. The result candied yams, sorrel- glazed ham, curried mutton, rice and peas, mashed potatoes, and steamed vegetables.

Chef de partie Juleiann Reid instructed Timothy through his task, coaching him along the way, to the final presentation of the mouth-watering dish.

"I am very happy I got to cook today," Timothy told Food, grinning from ear to ear after plating the dish. "I am more excited about becoming a chef."

*Name changed to protect his identity.