As the winter sun shined through the windows, the smell of roasted garlic and thinly sliced onions wafted through the air at St. Charles Episcopal Church Saturday as Chef Michael Zema taught students how to make minestrone soup during the church's Soul Warming Soups program.
Zema, who taught at the Elgin Community College's culinary program for more than 28 years, started the fundraising program for the church in 2010.
The cooking demonstrations run once every three months and are different each time.
More than 25 people signed up for the demonstration, where Zema offered cooking tips that he had gleaned from his years of experience.
Zema said he started becoming interested in cooking when he was just 10, and he credited his mom as his inspiration.