13-Year-Old Aspiring Chef with Autism creates Special Dish at Haven Gastropub during National Autism Awareness Month


Chef Greg Daniels leads Chase Bailey in creating a unique take on Haven’s noted Mac n’ Cheese

As part ofNational Autism Awareness Month, onTuesday, April 14th,Executive Chef/Partner Greg Daniels will join 13-year-old aspiring chef and Irvine resident Chase Bailey, who was diagnosed with autism as a toddler, in taping an episode of hiscooking showat Haven Gastropub in Orange.Chef Greg Danielswill teach Chase practical cooking tips and kitchen life skills that are often challenging for people with autism. The two will prepare Chase’s version of Haven’s noted Mac n’ Cheese and the public is invited to come try the unique dish, known asMac n’ Chase (N Yur Face),which will be available as a special for the day to raise awareness of autism.
‘In talking with MaryBailey, I’ve learned how individuals on the autism spectrum can have difficulties with fine motor skills which affect chopping, cutting, and other ordinary cooking tasks, explained Chef Daniels, who is familiar with cooking as a form of therapy from working with his own 3-year-old daughter, Madeleine, who suffers from a rare condition called Treacher Collins Syndrome. ‘Hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness can hinder a person with autism when it comes to cooking in the kitchen, so with Chase, I will be focusing cutting with a knife, stirring, carefully adding ingredients, and following instructions.

The recipes for Haven’s Mac n’ Cheese and Chase’s special Mac n’ Chase (N Yur Face) are available here:http://bit.ly/HavenMacNChase.

Children with autism can be inspired through music, or by playing a musical instrument. For Chase Bailey, his inspiration is cooking and food. Without formal training, and certainly not a prodigy, Chase is a kid with autism and with a plan to become a chef one day. Diagnosed as a toddler, Chase didn’t speak, or socialize, and he only ate five (5) foods. Since discovering cooking and baking, and the cultural meaning behind food, Chase loves to talk-in front of a camera-eats foods that he never ate before and has a discerning palette.With Chase’s cooking show as one part of his Life Curriculum-Chase’s tailored home schooling curriculum written by his mom, Mary Bailey-Mary acknowledges that this style of learning isn’t for everyone. But for her son, who’s thriving and still learning, this is what’s worked for their family, and might inspire other families.