A humble beet...
Meet Jeff and Jen Miller, the owners and farmers of the beautiful Prairie Wind Family Farms located just 8 miles from West Oak School! They taught the kids fun facts about beets, watermelon radishes and rainbow carrots, three vegetables all grown and sold on their farm.
Skoop and the Chef Ann Foundation Organization teamed up to launch the Project Produce Grant Program which awarded Diamond Lake District 76's West Oak School $2500 in funds to help give all students access to more fresh produce and food education during the school day.
In addition to Jen and Jeff, Mary and Executive Chef Silvio from Preferred Meals joined us and spoke to the kids. Chef Silvio got the students thinking about the ratio of vegetables and meat in our grocery stores, in our diets and on our plates:
- There is so much more vegetable variety than meat at the grocery store
- Vegetables detoxify our bodies and give us essential nutrients and antioxidants
- You can eat both raw and cooked vegetables (meat mostly cooked)
- Vegetables are much less expensive than meat
- Preparation methods are endless with vegetables
- Vegetables include essential proteins too
It was so FUN hearing Jen, Jeff and Chef Silvio speak to the students about their food passions, farming, cooking, and eating vegetables! Most especially sharing their knowledge of beets, watermelon radishes and rainbow carrots - three vegetables that most students had never seen or tasted before. Thank you SO much for volunteering your time to be with me in the lunchroom, the kids LOVED meeting and interacting with all of you.
The kids were pretty enthralled watching the beet hummus come together in the food processor.
And the ruby red hummus certainly stretched a lot of students out of their food comfort zone.
When's the last time you had anything that RED, which was NOT a fruit or colored by Red #40?
Creamy Beet Hummus
Inspired by this recipe
1 small beet
1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans drained (reserve some juice!)
Zest from 1/2 a lemon
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 large garlic clove (or two small ones)1/4 cup chickpea juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil
Combine first six ingredients into a food processor and blend. While blending pour in oil and reserved chickpea juice. Stop after 30 seconds and scrape the sides. Blend for another 30 seconds or until super smooth and creamy.
Roasted Beet Salad with Citrus and Honey
4-5 roasted beets diced
Zest + juice from 1/2 orange
Zest + juice from 1/2 lemon
3-4 Tbsp honey
1/2 tsp sea salt
3-4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and serve.
See you back in the lunchroom on the 28th!!
To the Mullies we go...
The beautiful rainbow carrots can be found at the new Mundelein Jewel-Osco Store. A BIG shout out to Dan, the produce manager who finds any vege or fruit for me that is unavailable from our local organic farms. THANK YOU!!