With these skills, youth learn how to prepare healthy, nutritious meals for themselves and their families. No previous cooking experience is needed. Many of these programs have multiple levels of difficulty so youth of all ages and abilities can participate.
Logan County 4-H has an active Cooking Club that meets here at the Extension Office. The next club meeting is October 15th at 4:30 pm here at the Extension Office Kitchen. The Cooking Club meets the third Thursday of each month at 4:30. The Club is open to any youth in Logan County ages 9-19.
4-H projects, such as Fantastic Foods, allow young people to complete various activities related to food and nutrition under the guidance of an adult. While 4-H’ers learn basic food preparation and cooking skills, they can also complete various experiments related to food and nutrition, such as causes of mold growth on food or ways calcium keeps bones strong.
Super Star Chef is for young people who are interested in food but do not have a lot of experience in the kitchen. In this program, youth learn about many topics including knife skills, sanitation, food safety, recipes, portions and measuring.
Another program, Super Star Chef Goes to the Farmers Market, allows youth to build upon skills taught in Super Star Chef and Fantastic Foods to learn about purchasing and preparing locally grown foods. Youth attend a local farmers market and learn about topics such as food selection, cooking, storage, and nutritional value of fruits and vegetables.
4-H’ers can also learn about locally grown foods by completing a gardening project. Youth do not need to live on a farm or have a large yard to participate. Some produce, like tomatoes, can be grown in a relatively small space, such as a window sill. Gardening programs teach youth about the stages of plant development and nutritional benefits of locally grown fruits and vegetables. In addition, youth learn life skills, like patience and responsibility. Youth may also want to enter the fruits of their gardening project in the county or state fair.
Youth can use the healthy habits they learn in 4-H throughout the lives. For more information on 4-H nutrition and cooking programs, contact the Logan County Cooperative Extension Service at 270-726-6323.