Generously Supported By: Individual from the Sprouts community
Age, at time of Internship: 17
CT Intern: Summer 2023
Restaurant Host: Alab SF, Chef Mikki Buñag
Referred By: Oakland Unified School District (OUSD)
De’Sean’s passion for food started young. Growing up, he remembers his aunt making mouthwatering food, like her homemade lasagna or her cubed, smothered steak with mashed potatoes and cabbage. As he got older, De’Sean wanted to learn more about how to cook and feed himself and being accepted into the Sprouts Chef Training program helped him do just that!
De’Sean was placed at Alab SF under Chef Mikki Buñag. There, he helped complete meal prep with farm-fresh ingredients including healthy greens like kale and various herbs. He especially enjoyed getting to try new foods every week sampling everything from ochre, to chocolate granola cookies, to sol fish rolls with crab in the middle. Over the course of his internship, De’Sean’s knife skills improved, and he was able to slice veggies with precision and make even cuts. He also learned to cook and plate a variety of delicious dishes, with a veggie frittata being one of his favorites to make.
Aside from gaining confidence in the kitchen, De’Sean also learned discipline from his often early morning shifts. He felt he grew from the challenge of starting work at 7am, and enjoyed the productivity and structure that the early start provided.
One day, De’Sean dreams of opening his own restaurant. Beyond his internship, he hopes to learn more about the culinary world, including making different types of cuisine, baking, and grilling. He is also passionate about creative endeavors, whether it be cooking a lamb curry, completing a detailed drawing, or making a ceramic vase. When he is not practicing cooking, you can find De’Sean spending time with his family and friends, playing sports outside, and hanging out with his dog, Dexter.