WHAT'S COOKIN February 2016

Big image

Local Produce From Wozupi Gardens To Start In May

Purchasing locally is important to help reduce our carbon footprint,, help our local farmers, and to get produce as fresh as possible. Starting in May, we will be purchasing produce from Wozupi Gardens (located in Shakopee) when possible. This will not replace us using our Department of Defense dollars for fresh produce, but rather to supplement when needed. Some of the produce they will be specifically growing for us in the fall are green beans, carrots, kohlrabi, cantaloupe, lettuce and green peppers.

At Wozupi, (pronounced Whoa-ju-pee) they organically grow a variety of produce on 13 acres of land, make honey from their own honey bees, tap and bottle their own maple syrup and raise chickens for eggs. Visit their website at to check out more and also what farmers markets they are at.

I'm excited for you all to be able to put these local products on your garden bars!

New Menu Items Tried In January

Asian Pork Buns: Introduced by the elementaries-Those schools that gave away the "I Tried It" stickers GD tried giving out samples. Keep showing a display plate so they can see what is inside

A couple schools tried fresh chicken instead of processed chicken. We will be incorporating fresh chicken where possible on future menus

Homemade Lo-Mein: Most at elementary and middle school kids gave a "thumbs up" on this one-Asian dishes are becoming more and more popular

Yogurt Smoothies: overall kids loved it. It was trial and error the first day! The little ones had trouble balancing them, but everyone seemed to quickly figure it out.

Local Grass Fed Hot Dogs: All schools tried a "better for you" hot dog from 1,000 Hills Cattle Company in Cannon Falls. It's local, does not contain nitrates and comes from cattle who are grass fed. Kids liked it overall so it now will be our hot dog we serve on all menus in the future.

Thai Chili Chicken over Rice: PLHS tried a spicier dish with the kids.

Pizza Burger: PLHS went old school and made the recipe we all used to enjoy! Students loved it

Cheeseburger Stuffed Hoagie: Twin and Hidden Oaks gave this new recipe a whirl. It had mixed reviews. We will try again and see if kids catch on to it.

Adding Those Special Touches

Often the trick to making a dish go from good to great is the special touches you add. Something as simple as brushing butter onto your homemade rolls or topping off your dish with some parsley flakes can increase it's visual appeal to students. It's been great seeing the thought and time you put into your dishes and serving lines.

One thing to keep in mind as you garnish is food allergies. Be aware of this and let me know if you question something.

Come Rain, Sleet, or Snow, the Kids Still Get Fed!

The staff at Westwood/Edgewood kept on going even through the snow! Edgewood school currently is satelliting meals from Westwood to Edgewood daily. Great job on bearing the elements to bring a hot lunch to our kiddos!

Focus Groups Were A Success

Twin Oaks Manager, Jane Broberg and Jeffers Pond Manager Lisa Nelson held their first focus groups in January. Both schools tried new potential menu items out with the kids: sunbutter uncrustable, spicy Asian chicken, "Fundles" which are a hand held hot sandwich. It was a great way to get feedback and connect with the kids.
Big image

Great Recipe Ideas Online-Check It Out

The Lunch Box shares best practices from around the United States by building a network of school food changemakers. We have a wide range of in-depth tools and resources to help with menu creation, financial management, procurement, marketing, and engagement strategies. Enjoy free access to scalable and downloadable recipes, USDA-compliant menu cycles, procurement tools, financial calculators, implementation strategies, training tools, marketing materials, and much more. - See more at:

Luaus at Grainwood & Jeffers Pond

Both elementaries had a little fun this month by creating luaus in their cafeterias this month. Between the Hawaiin music, the fun food and the decorations, kids had a blast! Thanks to all who made it such fun events!

Upcoming Events for February

February 8: Chinese New Year Celebration at all Schools-special menu
Servsafe test at DSC

February 10
: 2:30 All staff mandatory meeting at the DSC

February 12
: Valentines Day celebration at all schools for lunch

February 11 &
February 16:
Referendum meetings-at Twin Oaks. Attendance is not mandatory.

-February 23: This date is set for the Lake House Cafe opening at Prior Lake High School

(Plan ahead)
March 3
: Dan Patch Chapter 19 Meeting
-The Chapter will be doing a community service project to help feed hunger as well as 1000 Hills Cattle Company speaker discussing the benefits of grass fed animals. It is worth 2 CEU's. RSVP to

Archived Training Webinars Still Available

Did you miss an SNA webinar? No worries, SNA has them archived on their website. Go to to browse through their selection. Remember, these are FREE CEU's!