Edinburgh College and the community find a recipe for success

Students and staff from Edinburgh College’s Cookery and Hospitality department have been inspiring the local community, giving school pupils their first taste of life in the kitchen.

Four City and Guilds Level 2 students visited Castlebrae Community High School to help out at its annual Fun Fair Event.

The team of students – Justin Jones, Teigan Rillie, Shannon McNeil and Damion Jago – led by curriculum leader Mandy Purdie, spent time giving demonstrations to pupils from Castlebrae and its cluster primary schools.

The students taught the pupils how to make salsa and nachos, giving them an introduction to basic knife skills and food pairings, as well as explaining the importance of working in a clean and tidy environment.

The event marks the beginning of a new partnership between Edinburgh College and Castlebrae Community High School which will see college lecturing staff visit the school to provide regular cookery classes, while Castlebrae pupils will visit the college’s professional teaching kitchens and restaurant facilities – getting a real taste of life in the industry.

Edinburgh College Hospitality curriculum leader Mandy Purdie said: “I have had many rewarding days at Edinburgh College and I can safely say this was definitely another one of them.

“It was brilliant to see our second year students interacting with the school pupils and families from the local community – they had a great time giving their demonstrations, which boosts their own confidence as well as knowledge of the pupils.

“This was a great way to kick off our new partnership with Castlebrae. Now we can’t wait to get going, giving the pupils an introduction to cookery and hospitality.”

Castlebrae Community High School deputy head teacher John Johnstone said: “This annual event is a fantastic way for us to showcase some of the great work and partnerships we have at Castlebrae. It was brilliant to see lots of families from the local community attend, as well as P4-7 pupils from our cluster primaries.

“The school is very proud of this event and huge thanks go to Edinburgh College’s Cookery and Hospitality students and staff for their input, from which our pupils benefited hugely. Mandy and her team really showcased the excellence of their department and we’re looking forward to working with them again in the future.”