The Pennsylvania Beef Council’s Beef & Veal in the Classroom Program was brought to two high schools across Pennsylvania. The initiative was made possible through a partnership with the beef council, Mountain States Rosen, Formula One Feeds and Waja Farm Growers. Each year, 40 Family and Consumer Science (FCS) classrooms are selected to participate in the program where teachers are either offered reimbursement for beef purchases or veal product delivered to their school for class lessons.
This year, beef council staff had the opportunity to visit two of those schools participating in the program. On Thursday, January 22, Mrs. Dickson’s advanced foods class at McGuffey High School, Claysville, PA, hosted staff for their semester end meal preparation lesson including veal. Students selected a variety of recipes to prepare including Veal Forstiere, Veal Marsala, Baked Veal Cutlets and others.
The students began the week with lectures on the variety of meat cuts, ways to prepare and purchase veal and finished with choosing a recipe of their liking. McGuffey students prepared the veal along with a full course meal to wrap up their semester in the Gourmet Foods class. Many students, never having veal before, commented on their first experience with the product, saying “I would order it at a restaurant,” “I’m so excited to eat this,” and “I like veal better than chicken!” At the completion of a successful lesson, Mrs. Dickson commented, saying “The veal grant was a great idea. It gave the students an opportunity to study, cook and eat a food none of them have ever tasted.”
Staff also had the chance to visit Mrs. Funkhouser’s class at Charleroi High School, Charleroi, PA, who received a beef grant in the program. On February 23, Charleroi students prepared a vegetable and beef stir-fry recipe using Eye of Round beef steaks. Students were asked to slice and cook the beef in small batches, adding in a colorful vegetable mixture and their favorite stir-fry sauce. During the week leading up to preparing the stir-fry, students completed a ‘Beef Made Easy’ activity packet talking through various cuts and cooking methods of beef, beef nutrition and favorite beef recipes. While many students had entered Mrs. Funkhouser’s class with limited cooking skills, some are responsible for cooking meals at home and commented on how quick and easy the stir-fry meal was to make.
The new program for the 2015-2016 school year will launch on May 1. Interested FCS educators are encouraged to visit the Educators tab on the beef council website and submit an application for the program. Applications deadline is July 1.