Young chefs whip up fun, food



May 29, 2014 - 12:00 AM

HUMBOLDT — Young Humboldt chefs whisked, measured and chopped a variety of ingredients Wednesday afternoon during the Kids Can Cook summer class. The culinary class, sponsored by the K-State Research and Extension Family Nutrition Program, is available to area students who have an interest in cooking.

Terri Kretzmeier, Iola, has taught the class for 10 years. Last week’s class in Iola had a good turnout with about 13 students in attendance, Kretzmeier said.

In the Humboldt afternoon class at Humboldt High School there were eight students. Thane Meadows has taken the class since he was in second grade and this will be his last year to be eligible to participate. 

“I like having everyone come together and cook together as a group,” Meadows said.

The most important rule that Meadows has learned from the class is to stay away from hot ovens.

Kretzmeier not only teaches the children how to cook but also kitchen safety.

“We teach them how to be safe when using appliances and knives,” Kretzmeier said.

Another important rule in the kitchen is food safety. Students quickly learn the meaning of cross contamination and know they must constantly wash their hands to keep things clean.

“Students are allowed to bring their own aprons from home but they have to clean them in between days,” Kretzmeier said. “We also provide disposable aprons for them.”

The students split up into two groups and worked on different recipes. Kretzmeier had help from Jessica Shoop to instruct the kids. Kretzmeier teaches math skills, how to follow directions and the different food groups while the students cook. Instead of telling them what to do she asks them if they know the next step. Kretzmeier’s station was working on making brownie pizza with black beans as an ingredient. At Shoop’s station students took turns measuring ingredients to make tortillas in a bag.

“My favorite part is when we get to eat the food at the end,” Jorja Murcko said.

There is still room for students in the Moran classes. The students must have completed second, third, fourth or fifth grades. They may register at the K-State Research & Extension office at the courthouse or online at

 The Moran classes will be from 1:30 to 4 p.m. Monday through Wednesday at the Moran Senior Center.