Boy, did we have fun last night! Some friends and I decided to "wrap up" our China studies and kick off our Japan units with a sushi rolling party! Crazy, right? But it was just one of those things that worked out. I would never have thought to do something like this as a homeschool project, but it totally fell into my lap - or should I say inbox? - at the perfect time!
We are using My Father's World: Exploring Countries and Cultures this year as our main curriculum. My girlfriend, Christy, and I had already talked about trying to make an authentic Chinese meal for the end of China, or going out to a buffet. We all love Chinese food, but some of us are not as adventurous as others. ;) As for me, I think I could eat sushi every day and not get tired of it! Anyway, we were throwing a couple of ideas around when I got a Groupon deal in my inbox:
60% off a private cooking class from Happy Chef Catering Co.
Well, I'd never heard of Happy Chef, but I started researching. They offered homemade pizza parties, French cuisine, and - hello! - sushi rolling!! I was so in. I called the owner, Phil, and asked about the Groupon deal, but I was too late! :( I told him that we were homeschool moms finishing up some studies on China. We wanted to teach our kids about the ancient art of sushi rolling, but with a hands-on lesson. He told me that he'd never done anything like that, but he'd love to give it a try. He cut us a great deal, and we started planning.
So last night was the night. I tell you, it was one of my favorite enrichment activities we've done this year. Six families - six moms, two dads, and 21 kids - met at the Watson's home to roll sushi. I had warned Phil that we had a lot of kids, but they were all well behaved. I teased him that if they acted up, we'd threaten them with his sushi slicing skills. He promised to bring his biggest knife - I knew we were going to get along just fine!
The kids learned a lot, every child got to roll some sushi, and we all ate sushi till we couldn't eat anymore. Ok, I could have eaten more, but I wasn't feeling deprived by any means. ;) Some of the kids are pretty picky eaters, but that didn't stop any of them from rolling. And it's so true that kids are more willing to eat something that they've had a hand in preparing. EVERY child tried at least one kind of sushi. Only one or two said they didn't care for it, but we were so proud of them all for trying.
Although I'd warned Phil that there would be a lot of kids, I didn't give him a definite small head count because I didn't know two of the families coming - they were friends of the Watson's. I don't think that he had any idea we would have SO many kids! :) But he handled it like the pro he is and did an amazing job. We had to do a little organizing like choosing who would go first. They flipped a coin to choose, and the girls won. The boys waited patiently for their turn, and it worked out really well. Phil started getting worried at the end that he may run out of supplies. But like the oil in the jar, there was some left over! :)
All my kids love to cook and eat Asian cuisine. But before last night, Connor was the only one who loved sushi. We now have four children who are fans, thanks to Phil! And Connor has a new passion - rolling sushi! :)
I told Phil before he left that I knew this wasn't his normal clientele, but he had done so very well. He told me he enjoyed it, and I promised to get the word out about his company. So, here goes: Happy Chef Catering Co. is Springfield's Premier Catering Company with over 10 years of experience. Whether it's formal or casual, big or small, check Phil and his skills out for your next event. http://happychefcatering.com/ You will surely be impressed!