There was a celebrity at Riverbank High School recently that took some time to hang out with the advanced culinary class to give them a few tips. Season One Top Chef Junior runner-up Rahanna Bisseret Martinez from Oakland has loved cooking since she was a little girl. She brought her passion and sweetness to RHS and showed the students how to make frosting and then helped decorate some cupcakes since the culinary class was making cupcakes for prom.
RHS Culinary Instructor Emily Cowdrey was at an event in San Francisco where she met Martinez and her mother. She added that Martinez was moderating a panel on women in the food industry. Through this connection Cowdrey was able to set up the visit for her Culinary Arts class.
The students did some research prior to the visit and watched the season that Martinez participated in. So they had some questions for her when she was there. She let them know that some of her favorite castmates on the show were Maxine Sutton, Owen Pereira, and Fuller Goldsmith. And as far as the judges go, Curtis Stone was one of her faves.
“The students did great,” stated Cowdrey. “They really were candid with her and interacted with her as a peer. They had good questions and Rahanna answered them like a pro.”
They were not the only ones excited to see the Top Chef but so was RUSD staff along with Superintendent Dr. Daryl Camp and AVID District Director Nancy Garcia.
“They had fun and learned some techniques on piping,” added Cowdrey. “They also could not believe how young she was, 15. She was their age.”
The students were engaged with Martinez throughout her visit to the school and expressed that watching the show made them more excited about cooking. They made frosting and then made flowers with the frosting with leaves to decorate the cupcakes.
“It was really helpful for our upcoming prom event,” said Cowdrey. “She gave a really great demonstration and some fantastic tips and techniques.”
After the cupcakes were decorated all the students got to enjoy them.
“It was really special,” expressed Cowdrey. “One of those days that everything just came together and went really well. We would love to have her back.”
Mom, Mona Bisseret Martinez was at the school as well and explained that Rahanna began cooking with her at a young age. She was glad that her daughter was able to have the opportunity of being on Top Chef Junior and visiting the high school to share some of the skills she learned.