Culinary gives back for Thanksgiving

Students give up time over their holiday break to feed the homeless at the public library

DIGGING+IN%3A+Seniors+Asia+Vo%2C+Joseph+Mao%2C+and+Grace+Mansen+dig+in+to+make+the+oatmeal+crumble+for+their+apple+pies.+They+spent+the+bulk+of+the+day+running+the+dough+over+the+grates+to+make+enough+for+all+their+pies.+%E2%80%9CThe+apple+pie+was+my+favorite%2C+the+crumble+was+especially+fun+to+make%2C%E2%80%9D+Mao+said.+
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Culinary gives back for Thanksgiving

DIGGING IN: Seniors Asia Vo, Joseph Mao, and Grace Mansen dig in to make the oatmeal crumble for their apple pies. They spent the bulk of the day running the dough over the grates to make enough for all their pies. “The apple pie was my favorite, the crumble was especially fun to make,” Mao said.

DIGGING IN: Seniors Asia Vo, Joseph Mao, and Grace Mansen dig in to make the oatmeal crumble for their apple pies. They spent the bulk of the day running the dough over the grates to make enough for all their pies. “The apple pie was my favorite, the crumble was especially fun to make,” Mao said.

Photo by: Rey Gray

DIGGING IN: Seniors Asia Vo, Joseph Mao, and Grace Mansen dig in to make the oatmeal crumble for their apple pies. They spent the bulk of the day running the dough over the grates to make enough for all their pies. “The apple pie was my favorite, the crumble was especially fun to make,” Mao said.

Photo by: Rey Gray

Photo by: Rey Gray

DIGGING IN: Seniors Asia Vo, Joseph Mao, and Grace Mansen dig in to make the oatmeal crumble for their apple pies. They spent the bulk of the day running the dough over the grates to make enough for all their pies. “The apple pie was my favorite, the crumble was especially fun to make,” Mao said.

Rey Gray, Photo Essay Editor

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Over Thanksgiving break instead of staying at home in their PJ’s and watching Netflix, the Bowie Culinary team baked a total of 30 pies to serve at the Austin Public Library’s Thanksgiving dinner for the homeless. The A.P.L. reached out to culinary teams in Austin and both Bowie and Austin High replied saying that they would gladly make pies for their event.

Senior Grace Mansen was the main force driving the organization for this event on Bowie’s side, she worked with the library executives and her fellow culinary members to make sure that the evening went smoothly.

“I was basically the liaison for Rachel, the communications director at the Austin Public Library, and the Bowie culinary program,” Mansen said. “We texted, emailed, and set up a meeting to put everything in place to decide the logistics of the event. The days over Thanksgiving break I was a sous chef, so I wrote down a plan to show the volunteers what needed to get done.”

The culinary team does a lot of different catering events around the school, but what made this one so alluring and special was the chance to serve their community while doing something that they love. Senior Asia Vo moved to Austin before high school.

“My family moved to Austin to find a better opportunity for us and when I heard about Bowie’s Culinary Program I knew that that was what I wanted to do,” Vo said. “By volunteering with Bowie Culinary Arts at the Austin Public Library I felt like I was giving back to the city and program that gave so much to me.”

For senior Phil Braul serving this community with his culinary gifts means that he gets to prove that a person is never too young to make a difference in their community.

“As a kid, it always sucked not being able to make a difference in this world since I was looked at as ‘too young’,” Brual said. “This library event, like many others, gave me an opportunity to to break the dumb idea of being to young to help out. I try to do as much as I can just so I can leave my dent in this world.”

While getting to serve the community, the culinary team also gained valuable, real world experience for a future in the food service industry.

“There was no worry for money or speed, but customer interaction and service was definitely present and important,” Brual said.

The Culinary class can be stressful at times, but for students like Phil Brual they look forward to the challenge it brings.

“I plan to do culinary as a side job through college but it’s possible that I would want to pursue it as a career,” Brual said. “Even a stressful day in Bowie’s kitchen still can’t ruin my day. And if the culinary world is the same, I’m ready for it.”

Even if they don’t choose to go into a professional culinary career the skills that they have learned in Chef Winemiller’s class will benefit them in their adult lives. Senior Joseph Mao doesn’t plan on pursuing a career in the food service industry, but he still values what he has learned in Chef’s class.

“I’ll keep up with culinary as a hobby, but I don’t plan on pursuing a career in it,”  Mao said. “What I really enjoy is the atmosphere of the class, and especially what we do. It’s not an ordinary class and we get to serve people who just enjoy what we make, the satisfaction of serving someone is amazing.”

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