What do you get when you introduce a legendary culinary figure to a classroom full of budding young chefs?

Nancy with students from St Mary's. Photo credit: U.S. Department of State.

…a recipe for success!

The U.S. Embassy was thrilled to collaborate with the Wellington Culinary Events Trust on their Visa Wellington on a Plate (VWOAP) 2019 program and bring renowned LA-based chef, baker and author, Nancy Silverton, to New Zealand. Chef Nancy is credited with popularizing sourdough and artisan breads in the United States. Nancy is the co-owner of Pizzeria Mozza in Los Angeles and Newport Beach, as well as Osteria Mozza, Mozza2Go and chi SPACCA in Los Angeles. Silverton also founded the world-renowned La Brea Bakery as well as Campanile Restaurant.

Senior Students at St Mary’s College in Wellington were treated to a demo of Nancy’s work while she answered questions about her career as a chef, favorite techniques, current ventures and future plans. There was certainly a buzz in the air as Nancy entered the classroom – the students, and teachers alike, had been anticipating her visit for weeks.

Nancy worked with incredible flair and technique as she created her signature salad, having picked up ingredients from the local farmers market the Sunday prior. As luck would have it, almost all ingredients used by Nancy were growing in the schools greenhouse next door. The use of local produce and fresh, raw ingredients is signature to Nancy’s cooking style, and encouraged students to explore ways they could be creative with their own garden.

After the demo, Nancy was put in the hot-seat as she reviewed the junior class’ chocolate-chip-cookie recipes. While salad and cookies couldn’t be further from each other on the food pyramid, the experience was interactive and the students left inspired and energized by Nancy’s talent in the kitchen.