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What's Cooking in the Red Rabbit Education Labs This Year!

Have you met Jennie Plewka, our incredible resident Food Educator? She's been having a blast this school year, visiting partners and hosing workshops all over New York.  We sat down with her to learn the latest in Nutrition Education!

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Beat the Winter Blues

Have you or your kids been feeling a bit grouchy recently? This time of the year is famous for the flu season, but also for the “blue” season. The shortest day of the year (December 21st) has only just past, so it will take our bodies some time to adjust for the missing sunlight. No need to worry, though! We have you covered with some ways to cheer up during these darker days.

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Veggie of the Month: Edamame

 
What is Edamame?
 
Edamame means “beans on a branch” in Japanese. They are green soybeans that are a popular protein packed snack commonly eaten  in Japan.  They have a nutty, sweet flavor and slightly crunchy texture that kids crave.  The most fun way to eat edamame is straight from the pod. You can suck the beans out like a vampire. Or you can squeeze the pods to pop the beans into your mouth. Either way, they're the ultimate finger food. 
  
What is Soy?

Edamame is made from soybeans. Basically it's boiled "baby" soybeans, picked while still tender and cooked just before they peak.

Soy nuts are created by soaking soybeans in water, then baking them until they have a nutty, crunchy consistency. and begin to turn hard.

Tofu is made by coagulating soy milk and pressing the remaining curd into white blocks that can be firm or creamy.

Miso is a traditional Japanese seasoning ingredients made from fermented soy beans, salt and Koji, made from the fungus Aspergillus oryzae) Miso is a thick paste used for flavoring sauces and spreads, pickling vegetables or meats, and mixing with soup stock called Miso Soup.
 

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5 Ways to Kick Off the New Year

The New Year and winter holidays bring a time for reflection and relaxation, filled with presents, delicious food and New Years resolutions. While developing healthy eating habits are important regardless of the time of year, we at Red Rabbit are excited to seize the opportunity to start the year off on a healthy foot! 

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Healthy Holiday Cookies

December is the season for celebrating with food, family and community! With the upcoming work, school and familiy holiday parties, it's likely that you will be enjoying some sweet treats or making some yourself. Learn more about the tradition of holiday cookies and some healthy alternatives! 

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Veggie of the Month: Beets

Eat your beets! 

With their jewel red tones and earthy flavor, beets are one of the most dazzling colored root vegetables. Beautiful and nutritious, with a natural sweet taste, beets are a wonderful complement to a child's well-rounded menu. Plus, when mixed into foods, beets can turn any dish into a brilliant pink color that's fun to eat.

Check out these creative ways to sneak beets into your family's menu. 

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Substitute Meals

In the US, 5.9 million children under the age of 18 have some sort of food allergy.  That’s 1 in 13 children, or roughly two in every classroom. The Center for Disease Control & Prevention reports that the prevalence of food allergies in children increased by 50 percent between 1997 and 2011. As these numbers continue to climb, there are steps we can all take to ensure our students stay safe. Read on to see the steps and protocols that Red Rabbit follows to ensure your students are safe and how you can continue to protect your students.

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Gratitude: Noticing the Good Things in Your Life

This time of year, we like to take the time to say thanks. Practicing gratitude can enhance your overall happiness and well-being while also keeping you present in the day. It's easy to start to notice and identify the things you are grateful for in your everyday life. Tune in to the small details of your life and notice the good things (a wonderful loved one, a delicious meal, etc) that you might sometimes take for granted.

Here are a few tips to sharing gratitude at any age

Start a Gratitude Journal 

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Apples

November has come around which means fall is finally here, along with one of our favorite fall foods - apples! People have been enjoying apples for over 4,000 years for their health benefits and delicious taste.  Read More

Fall favorites coming soon!

With Daylight Savings nearly a week away, we’re starting to notice the seasons changing - the crisp air (and apples) are leaving us craving hearty & warming meals. The Red Rabbit kitchen is embracing this transition with some of our most prized fall foods. Read More

Veggie of the Month: Butternut Squash

Did you know? 
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Candy Alternatives

October has arrived, and with it so has the flood of Halloween sweets and treats. We were spooked to learn that American consumed 5.5 million pounds of candy in 2016. It's estimated that $2.7 billion will be spent on Halloween candy this year, so make sure you're putting your money to good use with some of our whole food alternatives below. 

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Low Cost October Activities for the Whole Family

Fall's just begun - and there are tons of free and low cost activities happening throughout NYC perfect for children! Take advantage of the crisp air, get outside, and learn something new!

We've picked out our favorite events for the next few weekends - here are our top picks for each borough:

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Veggie of the Month: Sugar Snap Peas

 

These little green gems are true to their name, full of natural sweetness and pack a crunch kids adore. Scroll down to see the facts you don't want to miss about this end of summer treat and a few resources on how to incorporate the food into your classroom and kitchen lessons this month.

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Why do bees make honey?

Think of someone who preserves their own food. Why they might go through all that trouble? They might tell you it is because they want to feed their families healthy homegrown food throughout the cold winter months, or because they want to be prepared with plenty of food in case their circumstances change.

Bees make and store honey for the same reasons. They need honey to feed their young. Honey helps them survive the cold winter months when they can’t get out and find flowers to make their food - and they need to visit lots of flowers. Honey's taste, smell and texture depend on the type of flower that each bee visits.

How do bees make honey? First, they collect a sugary juice called nectar from the blossom by sucking it out with their tongues. It is then stored in their honey stomach, which is different from their food stomach. When they have a full load, they fly back to the hive. From there, it is passed on through their mouths to other worker bees who chew it for about half an hour. It's given from bee to bee, until it gradually turns into honey. Bees store it in honeycomb cells, which are like tiny mason jars made of wax. The honey is still a bit wet, so they fan it with their wings to make it dry out and become more sticky. When it's ready, the bees seal the cell with a wax lid to keep it clean. 

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Veggie of the month: Corn

Ready for a corn-ucopia of knowledge? Sweet summer corn is truly something special. It's the kind of corn that's lined with row upon row of plump, firm kernels in varying shades of yellow and white that explode with sweet, fresh flavor the moment you take a bite.

Corn (scientific name Zea mays), called maize in Spanish, has been a staple ingredient in South, Central and North America for thousands of years. First domesticated over 8,000 years ago, corn has been a traditional food for Native Americans and is eaten in the diets of people living all over the world, including many populations in India, Mexico, Italy and nearly every nation in Central America.

Did you know...?

  • Corn is grown throughout the warm summer months on stalks of “ears”
  • Corn can be found in different varieties, including red, pink, black, blue, multicolored and pruple (like our Organic Biodynamic Purple Corn Flakes).
  • The possibilities are endless! Corn is used around the world to make polenta, flour, fritters, soups, sauces and even eaten raw. 
  • The nutritional value of corn has helped support growing populations, especially living in impoverished areas, for many years. 
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5 Ingredients You Don't Want in Your Chicken Nuggets:  Proceed with Caution Before Eating

BE CAREFUL before serving up those packaged frozen nuggets to your kids - make sure to check the back of the package for these ingredients.

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Red Rabbit Education Labs for all ages!

Every day, Red Rabbit's 20,000 meals get delivered to kids of all ages throughout New York City. This summer, Red Rabbit partnered with a group of adults to bring them the same made-from-scratch lessons that our Education team normally brings to our kiddos.

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Introducing Organic Purple Corn Flakes!

3 things about Red Rabbit’s newest cereal ...

We're excited to announced our newest partnership with Back to the Roots - look out for their Organic Purple Corn Flakes on your breakfast menu soon. Here's a little more about the cereal:

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Our Favorite Cooking Tips

This spring is all about tips, and in this week's blog, we've compiled our favorite cooking tips, secrets and cost saving ideas. Whether it's buying pre peeled garlic or freezing your own tomato sauce over the summer to use all year long, the home cook has her secrets. We asked the Red Rabbit staff to share their favorite tips.  Read on to save time and money when cooking for your family.

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