BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A call-out for donations on social media has allowed a Baton Rouge culinary school to prepare a Thanksgiving meal for those less fortunate.
Chef Chris Wadsworth created a Facebook post on the Triumph Kitchen page that the school wanted to give back to the community by feeding 300 to 400 people who may be in need. Several community members have dropped off bags of groceries at the Government Street facility and companies donated vouchers for turkeys and hams.
Students were seasoning up the birds on Tuesday to get them ready to be cooked. They have more than 20 turkeys. Half will be fried, while the other half will be baked.
"Make sure you flip him over, get under his armpit just like you're bathing him," Wadsworth instructed one student.
Triumph Kitchen is a non-profit culinary school offering at-risk students a chance to learn about the industry. After a 12-week program, the students receive assistance in finding jobs. With so many in the industry helping the school, Wadsworth decided that for this Thanksgiving, it was time to pass on that blessing.
"Really just helping the less fortunate. Maybe you don't have a hot meal. "But more important, we wanted our students to feel what it's like to give back 'cause there's so many people in this community that give to us, keep these doors open and keep these students in school with us," Wadsworth explained.
Wadsworth said he wants the students to be able to pass on the fortune they've been given by using the skills they've learned to help someone else. At the same time, he stated it's an opportunity to sharpen their skills.
"How do we transform this into something a little more unique, a little more cutting edge? Involve a little more of your culinary skills that you've learned," he added.
For example, they're using spices to create a more homemade cranberry sauce with the canned and fresh cranberries they've received. Along with all the tradition sides, they're also preparing desserts. Wadsworth said someone gave them bananas, so he used those, coconut milk and caramel to create a banana coconut pie.
The lesson in the kitchen this week is a simple one. It is on the importance of giving.
"Just makes you wonder how many people are really out there that don't have something warm to eat ... troubling thought," he expressed.
The students will carve up the turkeys on Thursday and portion out the plates. They'll be ready to pick up from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the parking lot of the facility, which is located at 1120 Government Street.