The Edmond Sun

May 17, 2013

‘Healthy Cooking With Spices and Herbs’ focus of OSU Extension workshop


Special to The Sun

OKLA. CITY —   As Americans try harder to improve their diets by decreasing fat and sugar, the challenge to make dishes tasty as well as healthy becomes that much more important.

To help residents learn to enhance their food and their health by using flavorful spices and herbs when cooking, the Oklahoma County OSU Cooperative Extension Service will host a “Healthy Cooking with Spices and Herbs” workshop Tuesday, May 21, from 1 to 4 p.m.

“Even the most low-fat, low-calorie foods can be part of a delicious meal when using spices and herbs,” explained Amanda Horn, a Registered Dietitian who is a Family and Consumer Sciences Educator for the Oklahoma County OSU Cooperative Extension Service. “Many of us don’t know which herbs work best with what foods, but by learning, we can improve the quality of the foods we eat.”     

Not only will participants learn to use fresh herbs and fragrant spices to flavor their dishes, but Monica Arndt, an Herb Farmer from Skyridge Farms in Jones, OK, will be on hand to demonstrate how easily fresh herbs can be grown at home.

Students in the workshop will get to observe hands-on food demonstrations that reveal how easily simple dishes can be improved with fresh herbs or spices.

“We want everyone in our workshop to see how easy it is to prepare great-tasting dishes that are low in fat and calories, but high in taste,” commented Horn, who will be teaching the class.

Participants will also be shown how to plant their own small herb gardens in pots for easy access and each workshop guest will get the opportunity to plant a pot of herbs to take home and place in a sunny location.

“We’ll work with our horticulture experts to help participants understand how to grow their own fresh herbs so they will have a good supply to use in their cooking,” said Horn.  “Many of us don’t know a lot about herbs and spices, but many fresh herbs have been proven to have positive health effects.”

“Healthy Cooking with Spices and Herbs” will be held at the OSU Cooperative Extension Auditorium, located at 930 N. Portland in Oklahoma City.

“We want this to be a fun, hands-on opportunity for people to learn more about how to cook with spices and herbs, as well as grow their own herbs,” Horn explained.

Cost for the program is $10. To register or for more information, contact the OSU Cooperative Extension Service at 713-1125.