Waxahachie High School culinary arts students divide and conquer weekly to prepare unforgettable lunches at The Reservation.
More than 20 advanced culinary arts students work in the campus-based kitchen to create tasty meals. For some young chefs, the trade is a hobby or interest, while for others, it is their future.
WHS senior Emily Bruce called out to-go orders to her team, ensuring lunches were made fresh by each customer’s scheduled pick-up time — a task she did not think would occur this year.
With the outbreak of COVID-19, Bruce was unsure if the campus restaurant would be open. When she found out The Reservation would operate by serving to-go orders only, she was excited to have the opportunity to improve her skill level.
“This is a really great experience,” Bruce said in the fourth week of operation.
Because this is Bruce’s senior year, it was important to her for the campus restaurant to be open. The senior is currently choosing between culinary schools to attend after graduation, with the hopes of enrolling in “the world’s premier culinary college,” the Culinary Institute of America in New York. This school year she is focused on learning different cooking styles and working as a team.
“I’m learning every day here,” Bruce emphasized.
With the obstacles presented by COVID-19, WHS culinary arts teacher Joel Skipper went in a different direction this year by offering a set menu with multiple options, rather than a daily special, which put the students in a more realistic situation.
“What we are doing this year is far closer to what stand-alone restaurants do on a day-to-day basis, which gives these kids a better idea of what they can expect when they get an entry-level job,” Skipper explained.
Skipper did express his eagerness to see the day when guests can dine in the restaurant again, but in the meantime is grateful to have this opportunity for the students and the community.
While working at The Reservation, students experience each station and graduate with a versatile skill set to make them more employable, whether they cook to support themselves while in college or pursue a professional career in culinary arts.
Skipper explained the students rotate from the flat top, sauté station, grill, fryer, and set up because, “It gives these kids a leg up.”
The campus restaurant is run by more than 20 advanced culinary students who prepare cook-to-order lunches for community members. The Reservation has been in operation for seven years in the Career and Technical Education wing of WHS.
Make sure to follow The Reservation at Waxahachie High School on Facebook, where links are posted weekly to place orders.
Pork Skins with Lime Crema and Red Tomatillo — $5
Deviled Eggs — $5
Fried Creamy Risotto Ball with Spicy Tomato Sauce — $5
Classic Caesar — $6
Classic Caesar with Chicken — $7
Apple Cranberry Walnut — $6
Apple Cranberry Walnut with Chicken — $7
Soup of the Week
Reservation Burger — $9
Grilled Cheese — $7
Chicken Fried Steak — $8
Five Cheese Mac ‘n Cheese — $2
Seasoned Fries — $2
Creamy Mashed Potatoes — $2
Stewed Collard Greens — $2
Country Green Beans — $2
Pumpkin Chiffon Pie — $2
Buttermilk Pie — $2