Earlier this week, South Maui Sustainability held a Harvest Day Party at their Kihei Elementary School Garden. Volunteers Chef Nio Kindla, Kathy Becklin, Susan Wyche and Stuart Karlan led Ms. Manglicmot’s 19 eager kindergarten students around the garden and showed them how to harvest their own vegetables.
Chef Nio talked about the importance of teaching kids that food comes from the land, not from supermarkets, and how communities can benefit from the inspiration of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, where he showed the kids the difference between a tomato and a potato, and where catsup and french fries come from.
Alan Joaquin, inventor of The Wiki Garden product used in the project, visited from Oahu with his wife Tannya of Hawaii News Now and their son Kaimana to be a part of the festivities.
The kids came away with big bowls of green beans, tomatoes, swiss chard, kale, beet greens and various herbs, including chocolate mint, sweet basil, lemon basil and parsley.
They brought them to Chef Nio, who made a deal with them that they had to try everything before they decided they didn’t like it, knowing that they hadn’t seen or tried many of the items before. He then proceed to show them how to wash and assemble the vegetables into a salad.
When the salad was prepared, the volunteers lay out beach mats so the kids could sit around the bowls enjoy the fruits of their labor. They did indeed try everything.
One of the clear favorites was the green beans dipped in a catsup Kathy Becklin made using tomatoes picked from the garden—a locavore treat. Watching the kids’ enthusiasm over eating the vegetables they handpicked themselves was an extremely rewarding experience. These are kids likely to eat their veggies when they grow up.
A second group of kids were sad and disappointed when the sky opened up and pouring rain prevented them from having their turn at the harvest, but they were treated to a large bowl of salad, which came back empty. Next time.
Originally posted on In A Cool Hour.