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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