My Cooking Matters Experience

I wanted to share my wonderful experience teaching the cooking matters class to seniors.
I recently volunteered for the Cooking Matters Program conducted by the Michigan State University Extension (MSUE).  I came across this interesting program in the Midland Daily News. I contacted the main instructor for SNAP-ED Nutrition at MSUE who was coordinating the cooking matters program.

Luckily, she was also looking for someone to assist her with the nutrition piece and there I was conducting nutrition education classes for Seniors at the Mills Seniors Centre in Midland, MI for the next six weeks.

I had a wonderful experience preparing for lessons and making them interesting and fitting to the needs of seniors. Making the seniors feels relaxed and creating an environment of friendly discussion and exchange of ideas and experiences, rather than just the expert talking.

The lessons were conducted in the centers lunch room right after everybody had their lunch. People, would sit and talk and ready to begin the class. I got opportunity to mingle with them make friends. I had such a great time!
The classes were fun and seniors would share there experience with certain topics like eating whole grains and dealing with diabetes or limiting salt intake and hypertension. We learnt how to cut a whole chicken, some were expert already and had their bag of tricks to do a clean job.

I consider this program a wonderful experience of learning. Also, this program is helping so many low income seniors, families and kids providing them the education regarding proper nutrition on a budget. The instructor and participants book has wonderful easy to make recipes that participants love trying out.

I am so thankful to MSUE for giving me this opportunity to be part of cooking matters.


Here is my recipe to Share:

Spicy Guacamole
Ingredients: 1 Avacado, 2green chiles/ Jalapeño Peppers finely chopped, 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice, 1.5 tsp finely chopped onion, 1.5tsp finely chopped Tomato, Salt to taste and finely chopped Cilantro to garnish.

Recipe: Mash Avacado in a bowl with a fork
Add all the other ingredients to it and mix well
Serve with tortilla chips, as a spread for sandwiches, add to a taco salad or burrito

Note: Addition of lemon helps with maintaining the green color as the juice prevents browning. Press the cling wrap gently on the top of guacamole and cover the bowl, this prevents the surface of the Guacamole from exposure to air and helps maintain freshness and color.

Health Talk: Avocados are a rich source of vitamins like Vitamin C, E and B6 and minerals like potassium and folate. They are a good source of “Heart Healthy”fats that helps lower the bad cholesterol and reduces the risk of heart disease. A serving of avocado which is 2Tbsp provides 45 kcal and 4 gms of fats. Although a source of good fat a small portion of avocado quickly adds to calories and should be consumed in moderation to rip the health benefit.


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