Bringing generations together with food
Age UK County Durham’s Come Eat Together Team have worked with Woodhouse Close Community Church in Bishop Auckland to set up the Come Eat Together Intergenerational Cookery Club.
The Cookery Club, held every Monday morning, at Woodhouse Close Community Church has been a perfect opportunity for all members to learn new skills and share recipes, tips and advice across the generations.
The cookery club began after Jean Clarke, Church community centre coordinator, received requests from the mother and toddler group for an activity where young mothers could learn to cook healthy two course meals on a budget. The Come Eat Together team was happy to help with the assistance of volunteer chef, Ian, who has shared his wealth of knowledge and skills.
As well as learning from Ian, members have shared new ideas and recipes as well as attempting the recipes, with great success, at home. The membership has grown over the months and now includes men and women of various ages and circumstances, working together to prepare a nutritious meal.
Over the past three months members have mastered dishes such as Lasagne, Toad in the Hole, Corned Beef Pie, Mince and Dumplings and Chilli con Carne. As well as delicious desserts including Eves Pudding, Apple Crumble, Cheese Cake and Suet Puddings. After cooking, members sit down to enjoy the meal together, giving everyone a chance to discuss what they think of the meal, as well as future meal choices.
Before leaving for the afternoon everyone works together to clear away the dishes, wash the pots and clean up the kitchen.
Here is what the members have to say about the Cookery Club
“I might be old but I’m still learning. I learn something new every time I come. I like the company and especially sitting down to eat together afterwards.” Doreen
“I enjoy learning new recipes that I have never cooked before. I can now make Bechamel sauce and cheesecake. I have saved all the recipes and have gone home and cooked some them for myself and my four sons. I thought it would be hard, but it’s a lot easier once you get started. I get to meet new people, learning new skills. It’s nice to sit together to eat and talk about planning new recipes. I always have a great time.” Duncan
“‘I really enjoy coming every Monday and I have made the lasagne at home.” Janine
The Cookery Club has been beneficial for all members and everyone has worked together regardless of age and background. As the weeks have progressed members have grown in confidence and have shared stories about which recipes they have attempted at home.
The members are happy to gain independence and now take charge of the group independently. It has been agreed that members will now contribute a small donation each week to buy ingredients to make low budget meals.