After the South Lawn of the White House was stormed by over 500 chefs from 37 states rallying behind First Lady Michelle Obama’s new Chefs Move to Schools initiative, a core group of chefs and some local elementary students harvested, washed, and prepared vegetables straight out of the Kitchen Garden on Friday.

Here are some photo highlights from the event:


Sam Kass, center, assistant White House chef and food initiative coordinator, instructs elementary students on how to harvest rhubarb.

harvest3.jpgNew York chef Bill Telepan, right, shoots a smile at the press while seeking shade under a salad bowl– which we hope was washed before being used for salad making!  Celebrity chefs Tom Colicchio, the lead judge on Top Chef, center, and Cat Cora, the first female American Iron Chef, left, look on.

harvest4.jpgFirst Lady Michelle Obama helps with the harvest, breaking a sweat and getting dirty in the process.

harvest5.jpg Students learn how to wash and trim veggies before cooking.

harvest6.jpgMrs. Obama shows off an impressive bunch of fennel.

harvest7.jpgCat Cora helps a little one learn how to chop greens for a grilled chicken salad.

harvest8.jpgCelebrity chef Rachael Ray, left, goofs off with a student at the picnic following the harvest. Ray has been active in pushing for healthier food in schools, and recently harshly criticized Congress for not meeting President Obama’s budget request for the National School Lunch Program.

For recipes, videos, and full coverage of the White House food initiatives, see Obama Foodorama.

Photos by Helena Bottemiller.