Cooking local seminar gives HCC students recipe for nutritional success

By Caroline Klapper | Nov 21, 2012
Photo by: Caroline Klapper Beau Tickle shows HCC students how to make kale salad.

Just in time for Thanksgiving, Haywood Community College, in partnership with Buy Haywood, presented a Cooking Local seminar to a class of Adult High School and GED students.

The seminar focused on ways in which people can participate in the “buy local” movement, nutritional information and a demonstration of several different healthy recipes made with local ingredients.

The seminar was made possible by a Contextualized Family Literacy grant.

“With this grant, it looks more at the whole person, and part of that is nutrition,” said Patricia Smith, coordinator of Adult Education at HCC. “We’re preparing them to obtain their GED or high school diploma and make healthier choices in life.”

“We’re getting people excited about cooking and giving them more opportunities to incorporate fresh, local produce in their diets,” said Anne Lancaster with Buy Haywood, an effort to market agricultural products produced locally.

After a nutrition lecture from UNCA Health and Wellness Promotion student Beau Tickle, everyone was invited to taste test a few recipes and see how they are prepared. The recipes included a beet salad, a kale salad, a dip and soup — all made from local produce.

“I learned that I liked beets,” said GED student Kari Autrey with a laugh.

She said she loves to cook with her grandmother, and thought the class would be interesting.

While she already makes the effort to buy local when she can, she said the seminar reinforced to her why it is so important to support local farmers.

For J.P. Romero, an HCC student and manager at Urban Athletics, the seminar was a good way to learn more about healthy eating.

“I’ve always been into fitness and part of fitness is about healthy eating,” he said. “I try to educate myself.”

He said he found the nutritional information about fats particularly informative, and he was glad to see local produce getting promoted, too.

“I really don’t trust the big corporations and stuff,” he said. “I like to buy local. That way, you know you’re getting a good product.”

For information about Buy Haywood, visit