Jan 31, 2013 - By Alejandra Silva, Staff WriterDay two of the Fremont County Farm and Ranch Days consisted of another set of short classes where organization representatives provided valuable ideas and information to the modern farmer and rancher.
Local residents, mostly women, filled a room Thursday morning to learn how to better use the foods they grow in their gardens and create good meals.
Phyllis Lewis, University of Wyoming Extension educator in Washakie County, began the session by listing where fresh fruits and vegetables can be obtained if consumers don't have their own gardens. Some answered farmer's markets and "bountiful baskets" offering local produce. Stores also might offer some local produce.
Participants later listed different ways of cooking meals, including grilling, using a crock pot, steaming, and the stove.
Lewis discussed ideas that could be favored by those looking to come up with a quick meal. She recommended going into the cupboard and pulling out pasta to add to a dish. The group discussion soon switched to what meals to prepare with leftover garden food. When deciding what to cook quickly, Lewis said many people forget that a variety of meals can be put together with just left overs.
"What am I going to do with my leftover zucchini?" Lewis asked the group.
Someone in the room said she adds zucchini to pancakes, and another called out, "Meat loaf!"
"What do you do when you have corn on the cob and not everybody ate their corn?" Lewis asked. "Corn fritters."
Inez Larson of Riverton told the group she roasted leftover broccoli stems in garlic and lemon juice. She and her grandchildren and her call them "trees and logs."
As the group grew more hungry, other ideas were suggested, taking in consideration what foods grow in different months of the growing season. A spinach and strawberry salad was mentioned by another person in the group.
"Who would have thought of that?" Lewis said.
Midge Hart, who starts planting her garden in late May, said both she and her husband cook, and the ideas she heard from the group will help them figure out what to do with all the leftovers.
"Growing up, we knew we had to eat everything," Hart said.
Lewis also showed the group the "My Plate" nutrition guide created by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to demonstrate what a healthy plate of food should look like.
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