When Marissa Pakiz heard about the student organic farm on the University of Nebraska – Lincoln east campus, she knew there was an opportunity to combine two things she loves.
“I am passionate about supporting local producers and thought this would be a great way to promote their farm and my CookWell classes,” she said. “It seemed like a win-win.”
As the Wellness Services and Nutrition Education Coordinator for Campus Recreation, part of her job is to run CookWell classes, which provide the campus community with the opportunity to come together and socialize. connect while preparing various recipes. For its recent Pick Your Produce event, the theme was the garden-to-table experience.
“The garden-to-table experience is unique because it reconnects us with the origin of our food,” said Pakiz. “With the conveniences of the modern world, we often don’t know where our food was grown or who grew it. It is a very special experience to choose your food directly from the source when we are used to selecting it from the shelves of the grocery store.
Not only does eating locally sourced foods help to understand where the food comes from, but Pakiz said, “Eating more local, seasonal produce promotes environmental sustainability, community and the consumption of nutrient-dense foods. You are also more likely to try different varieties of products, which promotes a balanced and varied diet.
Pakiz said more than one CookWell attendee said the flavors they tasted in the dishes they made were fresher and brighter than what they usually find in the grocery store.
“I would absolutely be interested in doing this event again in the spring, so keep an eye out for similar events next year,” Pakiz said.
Interested in attending an upcoming CookWell class? Find them on the student events calendar and register today.
Upcoming CookWell courses
Oktober’s Day September 9 5.30 p.m. Leisure and Wellness Center
Halloween Snacks October 28, 5:30 p.m. Recreation and Wellness Center
Fall harvest November 10, 5:30 p.m. Recreation and Wellness Center
Wonderful winter vegetables December 9 5:30 p.m. Virtual event via Zoom