Food $ense youth educators have been visiting elementary school classrooms in the Auburn, Highline, and Kent School Districts since October, providing hands-on nutrition education to students with the help of their classroom teachers. In a recent visit to Springbrook Elementary School in Kent, F$ educators Kelsey and Mary prepared pancakes with applesauce (see recipe below) with Ms. Laurie Sison’s 5th grade class. The pancakes are made using one of WSU Extension’s most beloved recipes: the Master Mix. Turns out, Ms. Sison had a story to share with her class about the Master Mix.
“It it was something that helped me help my family in a very profound manner,” she says about the Master Mix recipe, which Ms. Sison learned from her home economics teacher at school. Ms. Sison grew up on the Yakama Indian Reservation in central Washington. Her family included 8 children and sometimes cousins as well as her mother and father. They had very limited resources. As the oldest daughter, her family relied on her to do most of the cooking using limited commodity food items from Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations. “I loved Master Mix. It allowed me to use commodity foods like flour, shortening, dry milk and also canned milk to make biscuits, pancakes, waffles, and pie crust for cheeseburger pie. I felt so capable…All of those were loved by all in the family. We appreciated the ability to eat like that,” she adds. Ms. Sison hasn’t made the Master Mix recipe in a long time, but she remembers it fondly.
Ms. Sison recognizes that the recipes made by Food $ense may be leaving a similar mark on her students as well. She says, “(it) is a very important part of their week. They are so excited about the food! I am proud of their efforts and very grateful for all of you who make the program possible. As you can see, those things leave a lasting impact on people. I am 52. I learned how to make Master Mix when I was 13. I vividly recall the way it looked, felt to make and tasted. It was amazing!”
It’s equally amazing to work with inspiring teachers like Ms. Sison. At Food $ense, we meet many people living their very own success stories, and to be a part of that story is a joy for all of us. A great big Food $ense Thank You to Ms. Sison for sharing hers with us!