By Staff Sgt. Patrice Clarke
50th Space Wing Public Affairs
The knives were flying, the chicken searing and the vegetables resting. No, this wasn’t a scene out of the kitchen stadium in Iron Chef America and there weren’t really any flying knives, but nutritious cooking was happening at the Schriever Health and Wellness Center’s Healthy Cooking Demo, Sept. 28.
Fifteen Team Schriever members came out to watch Staff Sgt. Vanessa Arthur, Schriever HAWC dietician, prepare Chinese chicken with brown rice and learn some healthy cooking habits.
“The main purpose of the demo is to offer a different method of teaching and learning,” said Arthur. “Some people are visual learners. The cooking demo allows those attending to actually see what is going into the product and then get to taste it.”
The healthy meal this month was chosen in honor of fruits and vegetables month.
“We base our menu around the national health observance of the month,” said Arthur. “I wanted to create a dish that included a lot of vegetables and ingredients that people don’t typically use.”
The chicken dish included shiitake mushrooms, bamboo shoots, rice-wine vinegar and dark soy sauce. All ingredients, Arthur ensured, can be picked up at the commissary or local grocery store.
“If people have to search for ingredients or they are too costly, many people just won’t make the dish,” she said.
Airman 1st Class Nicholas Corbin, 595th Space Group intelligence analyst, attended the demo to learn how to cook something healthier. Along with receiving a recipe card of the chicken dish, Corbin also learned some healthy food information.
“I didn’t know there was a difference between black and white pepper and that increased protein intake can cause osteoporosis,” said Corbin.
Along with preparing a meal for the attendees, Arthur also dished out nutritional advice, information and tips for a healthier lifestyle.
“I like to provide nutrition facts so people can understand why it’s important to have a balanced diet,” said Arthur. “I let them know what benefits they’ll receive from consuming the ingredients contained in the recipe; benefits such as lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. I also explain if an ingredient is a good source of certain vitamins, nutrients or minerals.”
After the demo was complete all members were able to enjoy the completed dish.
“I enjoyed the demo and the food was great,” said Corbin. “I would attend the next one.”
The next cooking demo will be held at the Tierra Vista Community Center here Oct. 21 from 1 to 2:30 p.m. It will feature turkey meatloaf, mock cauliflower mashed potatoes, sautéed kale and blueberry icee.
“We will be moving the next event to accommodate more spouses and those who don’t usually have access to the restricted area,” said Arthur.
Space fills up quickly; all wishing to attend should call the HAWC at 567-4292 to sign up.