Houston, We Have a Farmer!

Recipe for Success
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IMG_9252.JPGWe are delighted to announce that Army Veteran, Oriana Franklin has completed our comprehensive one-year Warriors to Farmers training course at Hope Farms designed to prepare her to operate her own urban farm as a profitable business. Oriana now enters our Business Incubation Program wich is funded by our USDA AGVet grant, and will be come a member of our Hope Farms Coop. Her final class project was creating a business plan to help guide her through the first years of Franklin Farm. Oriana will launch Franklin Farm on a 1/8 acre lot near the intersettion of Scott and Elgin in the Third Ward, fulfilling our vision of expanding the footprint of urban farms throughout Houston's identified food deserts. We plan a ribbon cutting to celebrate this milestone on November 18 and hope you will join us in congratulating Oriana on her achievement.

Give 'em Pumpkin to Talk About

Recipe for Success
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AdobeStock_71862902.jpegTake your fall family photos this year at Hope Farms! Hope Farms has the perfect Autumn Harvest setup that will get you in the fall spirit. Bring you camera and enjoy vignettes featuring pumpkins, hay bales and a charming antique tractor. Whether you dress in costume or your favorite coordinated fall outfits, it will be a fun time for the entire family. Appontment times will keep every one safely distanced so you can focus onthe fun.

Make your reservation for Saturday October 24th or Saturday, October 31st between 9:00 and 1:00 online here.

After your photoshoot, make sure to stop by the Farm Stand and pick up some freshly harvested produce. Customers can also order online for seamless, drive-through pick up.

Re-imaginging Seed-to-Plate

Recipe for Success
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Screen Shot 2021-01-14 at 2.29.30 PM.pngClassroom closures during the pandemic completely sidelined our Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ program for tens of thousands of students, while homebound children are losing touch with healthy eating habits. The well-documented relationship between poor childhood diet, obesity and a lifetime of chronic health issues has been brought into sharp relief by the current pandemic, which has disproportionately affected low income communities of color where obesity, diabetes, heart and kidney disease are rampant. These pre-existing conditions are at the heart of the glaring health disparities and tragically high mortality rates for COVID-19 that are now being seen in these underserved areas. And the medical community warns us that obesity is on the rise as families in lock-down consume more unhealthy meals and snacks.

In this unprecedented environment, we are adapting our approach to support healthy decision-making using the latest in technology and learning trends. We are reimagining our signature school-based Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ curriculum in a new delivery platform. EatItFoodadventures.org, featuring a 24-episode video series of cooking and garden classes and resource packed website of information, visual glossaries and projects for independent food explorers is a subscription-based website that will bring Recipe for Success Foundation's award-winning content directly to children and their families.

The new website will leverage content in Eat It! Food Adventures with Marco Polo, our award-winning children's cookbook and the correlating themed curriculum that we designed and tested in our classrooms from 2012 to 2016. Following our model of making healthy food fun, each of the 24 episodes will feature the adventure of discovery - uncovering new flavors and food traditions that celebrate the melting pot of American culture, honoring the concept of locally grown, home cooked meals, and emphasizing the importance of fresh foods, prepared from scratch and shared at table with family and friends.

The anchor series of 12 to 15-minute produced videos, as well as the supplemental content have been designed by a diverse education team consisting of a media specialist with an extensive background in children's multi-media education, award winning graphic designer, master educators and curriculum designers, trained S2P culinary and gardening teachers, chefs, master gardeners and the agricultural staff at Hope Farms.

We plan to go-live with the site in time for spring break 2021, so what better gift for your favorite family than a year-long subscription. Details to reserve are here.

You will love this BTS clip captured during a recent filming with Tyler and five-year-old Isabelle Blomquist.

Get #HitchedatHopeFarms

Healthy Eating Ambassador
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Hope Farms is now open for socially distance intimate weddings! For $2,000, Hope Farm's Intimate Wedding package affords a two-hour event on 7 acres of urban green space in Sunnyside, just outside Loop 610, complete with ceremony backdrop, seating for 12 guests, wedding cake, tabletop and wedding flowers. Read more from the Houston Chronicle Here

Citybook Highlights Hope Farms

Volunteer Ambassador
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Note from Citybook's Editors: "We first wrote about Hope Farms extensively in this beautiful photo essay and article in our September 2017 issue, just before Hurricane Harvey laid the then brand-new nonprofit agricultural project low. The farm, an initiative of philanthropist Gracie Cavnar's Recipe for Success, bounced right back, though, and CityBook went on to proudly sponsor several of the nonprofit's marketing endeavors -- and even, in January 2019, made a coverboy out of one of the organization's (hunky) former-military farmhands. We're not surprised at all to learn that, even through the current crisis, Hope Farms continues growing its organic fair, delivering food shares. The weekly package -- containing about a dozen varieties of veggies, fruits and herbs -- is delivered to customers on Tuesdays. "With this small gesture, we continue to celebrate the power of a shared meal to build memories," says Cavnar, "and empower parents to feed our children healthy food." Read Article Here

CW39's Maggie Flecknoe is Ready to VegOut!

Volunteer Ambassador
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The CW39's Maggie Flecknoe visited RecipeHouse to get Houston ready to VegOut! on March 1st! We have some of our favorite VegOut supports join us, Erin O' Leary Stewart, Chef Antoine Ware and Chef Greg Martin. Check out the interviews below! #VegOut2020

IMG_4339.JPGErin O'Leary Stewart, Director of DEFINE foods shares a healthy recipe and ways to get your kids to eat their veggies...HERE

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Chef Antoine Ware is putting an emphasis on quality Texas and Houston-produced ingredients and products at Luby's. Starting with some new vegetable dishes starting on March 1st....HERE

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Greg Martin, Chef & Proprietor of Bistro Menil, shares a dish that incorporates multiple vegetables for the challenge....HERE

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Tasty Thymes Were Had at the December Family Cooking Class

Healthy Eating Ambassador
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This December we welcomed Chef Kevin Naderi of Roost for a hands-on family cooking class to explore holiday favorites with a healthy twist. After taking our food adventurer oath, the class perfected their knife skills with a Fall Harvest Salad, spotlighting our Hope Farms winter harvest of kale, arugula, green onions, and radishes. A tofu green goddess dressing that would turn any ranch lover was a hit with the kiddos, not only for a new and exciting flavor profile, but also the bonus of using the immersion blender!

As an accompaniment to the salad, students whipped up a warmed cranberry and goat cheese spread to top a toasted artisanal sourdough loaf, courtesy of The Breadman Baking Company, that demonstrated proper zesting, peeling and folding techniques. One would have thought that our young chefs were participating in a holiday cookie-decorating contest with the prescion used in crafting the beautiful crostinis!

Moving into the second course, a Butternut Squash Bisque, Chef Kevin emphasized the importance of knowing how to measure ingredients properly. A little nutmeg can go a long way! Chef Kevin also expanded on how substitutions can be made to recipes to create a healthy alternative, in this case by swapping the dairy out for coconut crème and offering an optional sautéed apple and turkey bacon relish as garnish for a flavor explosion! Our mission of combatting the devastating impact of #childhood obesity paired with #growinghealthykids by empowering the next generation of food consumers to make mindful eating decisions is the reason we are so focused on creating these opportunities for learning the culinary skills to live healthier lives.

The class rounded out with Dutch Oatmeal Stuffed Apples roasted in cast iron skillets over an open flame. The kids were fascinated with Chef Kevin's lesson on grill safety! After a quick farm tour, stopping off for eggs at the chicken coop, the apples were ready to come off the fire and were served with Chef Kevin's own Tahitian Vanilla Bean ice cream from his Houston Heights Sweet Bribery on 19th street (He just HAD to bring the goods!!). As the parents and children sat down together to share a meal and talk about their favorite moments from the class, the smiles were plentiful and talk of how the day's recipes were to be incorporated into this year's holiday tables was in the air! We are extremely grateful for Chef Kevin Naderi who continues to teach, empower and inspire healthy eating in our community! We are tremendously appreciative of his support to fuel our award-winning work in Houston and across the country.

If you or someone you know is interested in our interactive cooking classes for adults and families, check out the upcoming class schedule here or register for our January 4th Adult Cooking Class here!

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KPRC 2 Commends Warriors to Farmers Training Program

Healthy Eating Ambassador
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KPRC 2 Houston Life visited Hope Farms on Veteran's Day to celebrate the Warriors to Farmers Training Program and our cohort! Check out the interview here.

Houstonia Captivated by Fashion in the Fields

Healthy Eating Ambassador
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Roslyn Bazzelle Mitchell, Lyndsey Zorich, Elizabeth Dwyer, Amanda Boffone, Gracie Cavnar, Mary Patton, Semmes Burns, Melissa Juneau, Kristin Falgout-Gutknecht_0524_RFSFashionInTheField_111019_MCW.jpg

"Last Sunday, Recipe for Success Foundation held its second-annual sold-out event, Fashion in the Fields, presented by Neiman Marcus. The UnitedHealthcare Foundation Gathering Barn at Hope Farms played host for the swank crowd that included families, socialites, media stars, and devoted philanthropists alike. Event Chairs Amanda Boffone and Elizabeth Dwyer set a mod, glamorous tone for the event, which was a multifaceted affair and featured a cocktail social hour, fashion show, and delectable brunch by Snooze Eatery, La Table, Common Bond, Hilton Americas, and Pat Greer's Kitchen.

The weather could not have been more perfect; wide-brim hats and breezy fall neutrals ruled the day as the perfect match for the sunny, crisp fall afternoon..." Read More

Tell Us A Story About a Meal

Recipe for Success
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Thumbnail image for 0109_RFSFashionInTheFields_111118_MCW.jpgFor the 14th year, we are encouraging fourth graders throughout Houston to put pen to paper for our story writing contest around favorite holiday foods. This annual contest encourages students to write thoughtfully and descriptively about their favorite holiday foods and traditions. It also focuses students on the importance of family meals while providing teachers with a powerful tool to support their core objectives in language arts. Additionally, it helps students explore the many facets of food and recipes, including step-by-step procedures and measurements, as well as their diverse cultural histories and family traditions.

Submissions are due by October 25, 2019. Teachers at participating schools will select one winning essay from their student submissions for entry in the citywide contest. One essay per school will be accepted by the Foundation. Advance registration is required through Jennifer Fridley at jennifer@recipe4success.org, and the contest is open to all Houston elementary schools. Schools implementing the Foundation's Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ are already pre-registered for the contest.

"Recipe for Success created our annual writing contest to encourage students to focus on the importance of building family food traditions and offering a fun, festive opportunity to practice writing skills that support state test standards," said Gracie Cavnar, founder and CEO of Recipe for Success Foundation Founder. "This is one of the cornerstone tools Recipe for Success uses to weave our healthy food messaging into the curriculum of our participating Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education schools."

The grand-prize winner will be recognized during Recipe for Success Foundation's Fashion in the Fields at Hope Farms on Sunday, November 10 and roll up their sleeves in January 2020 as Chef for a Day to prepare a celebratory meal at Bistro Menil, alongside Greg Martin one of Houston's celebrity chefs. The student chef and celebrity chef then share that meal with the student's family, friends and school representatives. The winning essay will be showcased online at www.recipe4success.org.

The 2018 winner was Nadia Rosado (pictured above) from MacGregor Elementary School in HISD, who wrote a beautiful story about her abuelita's (grandmother) "famous" empanadas. Excerpts from Rosado's contest entry explained how "Empanada's are one of the few foods that unites all of Latin American. I bet that my Abuelita's empanadas are some of the best in the world. They are simply delish!" For the winning story, Nadia got to spend a day being a chef alongside Greg Martin, chef/proprietor of Bistro Menil. The two spent the day in the kitchen, prepping a meal for the Rosado family.

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