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Cooking up the holiday season

November 1, 2016
Amanda Bohlen , MOV Parent

At Ohio State University Extension Office of Washington County, we understand what it's like to have the desire to make you and your family healthy but struggle because your family is constantly busy or you're on a budget and find it hard to try new recipes that your family will enjoy. We ourselves have been there too. That is why we are our third class here in the county called Cooking Matters. Cooking Matters is an Ohio SNAP-Ed nutrition education program serving low-income adults and youth throughout the county. Our goal is to improve the likelihood that people receiving SNAP benefits will make healthy food choices within their limited budget. The curriculum teaches adults about healthy meal preparation and sensible shopping on a limited budget. Each week participants observe a multi-session course that combines hands-on food preparation with nutrition information, food budgeting and shopping techniques.


Classes meet for two hours, one time per week for six weeks. Participants will prepare delicious, new recipes in a fun setting. They will learn to get your family excited about healthy eating and learn tricks to buy healthy food on a budget. Participants will take home the ingredients to recreate the recipe at home FREE. Week 5 is a guided tour of a local grocery store with a FREE $10 shopping card. Participants must attend 4 of 6 classes in order to "graduate" and receive a guide with 60+ delicious, low-cost, family-friendly recipes

The course is free to adults over 18 and will be held Thursdays, November 3, 10 and 17 and December 1, 8 and 15 from 4-6 p.m. Classes will take place at the Evergreen Community Center, 113 Ellsworth Avenue Marietta, OH 45750 Space is limited so call the OSU Extension Office to secure your spot at 740-376-7431 Missed the first class? Not a problem. You can still join in during the second class.

Maybe you don't receive SNAP benefits but are still interested in a class like this. Please call the office and let us know that you are interested too! If there is a high demand for classes like this, then we will be able to expand into working with everyone. Don't wait any longer.

Let us help you get ready for the holiday season! We promise you won't regret it!

Here's a sample of one of the recipes we make in class. During class we offer up notes on making these ahead, adjusting the recipe to fit your families taste, shopping tips when buying certain ingredients and what to do if you don't have certain equipment. Are you hungry for more?

Pumpkin Muffins

Serving Size: Serves 12, 1 muffin per serving

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup white sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

11/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1/2 (15-ounce) can pure pumpkin puree

1/2 cup nonfat plain or vanilla yogurt

1/4 cup canola oil

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Non-stick cooking spray

Optional: 1/2 cup chocolate chips (or 1/2 cup raisins or chopped nuts)

Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl, mix flours, brown sugar, white sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. In a medium bowl, combine eggs, canned pumpkin, yogurt, oil, and vanilla. Mix well. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Stir until just combined. Do not overmix. If using chocolate chips, raisins, or chopped nuts, stir in now. Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Fill each muffin cup about 3/4 full with batter. Bake on middle rack of oven until muffin tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 2530 minutes. Cool in pan about 5 minutes. Tap muffins out of pan. Cool completely before serving.

Amanda Bohlen is the new family and consumer science educator for The Ohio State University Extension in Washington County. She received her bachelor's in family and consumer science education from Ohio University and her master's in curriculum and instruction from Ohio Valley University. For the last seven years she has been in the classroom teaching high school students' financial education, child development, nutrition and culinary skills.



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