This past week, we had the opportunity to educate and have some fun with ten open-minded students to learn more about cooking and science. Our first day together, we learned all about sugar. We taste tested granulated sugar, brown sugar, confectioners’ sugar and sweet’n’low. It’s safe to say the kids were having an excited morning.  We experimented with rock candy and the kids were excited to see their rock candy grow through-out the week. It was interesting to see how macerated berries and fresh whipped cream came together. After the kids chopped their berries and whipped their sugar and cream, they finally got to enjoy the fruits of their labor.

The second day we started our morning by taste testing different salsas and learning different knife skills to help us be more successful in cutting up our ingredients.  We had some teary-eyed kiddos who had their first experience cutting onions. It’s safe to say they were surprised at the way onions had that impact. They got to take home canned salsa as well as lacto-fermented salsa. Kids were interested to learn about all the benefits of liquid whey from our good friend Dori Huenefeld. We were so excited to have her back here to help teach.

The third day we experimented with pie making. When we told the kids we were making pies, the number of gasps and wide-eyed kids was enough to make my day 10x better. Judy Schachenmeyer, from the Edgerton Explore Center, showcased her pie making skills and taught the kids the art of making a dangerously good pie.

The fourth day we got the opportunity to learn more about dairy. The kids had some sore arms from churning butter. They all looked forward to the nitrogen ice cream and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Judy Schachenmeyer from the Edgerton Explore Center helping students dish out cookie dough onto pans.

The final day with the kids, we had some trial and error with cookies. We made different batches with different ingredients to show the various ways different ingredients interact with each other. The different ingredients were baking soda vs. baking powder, granulated sugar vs. brown sugar, eggs vs. applesauce, Crisco vs. coconut oil, and finally fresh butter vs. Butter-It. It came as a surprise to everyone that the applesauce cookies were a hit.

By the end of it, the kids got to take home some nice kitchen supplies to showcase their newly-learned skills at home. Over-all everyone involved had a great time and we all learned a lot of new things.

-Abby

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