ACP’s Culinary Experiences: The Taste of The NFL


The Super Bowl is one of the most celebrated events in the United States, bringing family and friends together at home or in the stadium. In fact, the Super Bowl has 40 million views internationally and 113 million views domestically. Because of its popularity, the NFL hosts events, such as the Taste of the NFL, to make the Super Bowl tradition more meaningful to younger generations and take the opportunity to raise awareness & funds for a program called GenYouth in order to feed the hungry and underprivileged. ACP’s Culinary class got to be a part of this tradition. On February 10 and 11-a Friday and a Saturday-five schools with culinary programs in Arizona, including ours, were selected to bring six students each to cook with celebrity chefs and serve them during the event to NFL players and media personnel. The students were at Chateau Luxe in Phoenix all of Friday, cooking and baking in the kitchen and all day Saturday (10am-10pm) to finish baking, set up, and serve/participate in the event. Today, we’ll be talking to one of the culinary students that was fortunate to be given this amazing opportunity, Serena Das, to ask her more about the event and how she felt about it.

The students took a small bus to Chateau Luxe, Phoenix, AZ, which was about 25 minutes away from the Superbowl Stadium and was a great bonding experience for everyone, as they got to know each other and work together on different dishes over the course of the two days. They also got their own aprons, chefs coat, and plaid pants. “While working with Lasheeda Perry,” Serena recalls, “she took us in as her own students and taught us how to temper chocolate, make the perfect swiss meringue, and fill cream puffs, which is a very tedious process.” Serena also learned just how much work goes into hosting an event like this; it is a tremendous project that takes a lot of time and work. She was able to watch the entire setup while working in the kitchen and have an appreciation for the people who put days of work into a four-hour-event.

Serena is a junior and surprisingly, this is her first year in the culinary program and one of her main incentives for her to come to ACP. Of course, she’s loved every minute of it so far! In her free time, Serena is currently working toward getting her black belt in karate next year, plays the violin, and is involved in school activities such as working on our school’s yearbook this year, being a president of two clubs, working as a peer tutor, and more.

“I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to participate in the Taste of the NFL,” Serena comments. “As one of the most popular Superbowl festivities, I got to meet lots of iconic people and learn a tremendous amount about what it takes to pull off such an event in the kitchen. It was such a cool experience getting to work in the kitchen with celebrity chef Lasheeda Perry, making the demos for her TV interviews, and getting to serve her delicious recipes to NFL players and media people” she explains. Serena also got to personally meet other celebrity chefs like Andrew Zimmern, Carla Hall, Tim Love, and Mark Bucher, as well as getting the exciting opportunity to have her apron signed by NFL players like Demario Davis and Tariq Woolen. What Serena is most happy about is helping raise awareness for the GenYouth charity, and she gives a big thank you to both Chef Treadway and Chef Hudson for this marvelous experience!

It’s amazing to see older generations with years of wisdom and experience pass on their knowledge to younger generations in events such as the Taste of the NFL, and hopefully, Serena and the other students who got to be a part of this tradition will cherish those moments for years to come. As always, Knights, remember to strive for the impossible and be extraordinary!

Featured Image Credit: Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee