Garden Kitchen Lab

The Garden Kitchen Lab is a backyard-to-table STEAM educational program for underserved communities. Our mission is to give youth access to healthy and locally grown food through starting and sustaining food-producing gardens. This hands-on multi-disciplinary program puts the power in the hands of community children, so they understand the link between food production and the environment, and take ownership of their health.


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“Food Lab” at Garden Kitchen Lab

Garden Kitchen Lab will be developing new projects called “Media With A Purpose”; which aims at leveraging technology to learn about sustainability, and other cultures through food and cooking.

Thank you Media Education Coordinators Chad Chenali and Belinda McKeever for collaborating with me on this project!

#MediaWithAPurpose #Food Lab #FabiolaCaceres #ChadChenali #BelindaMcKeever

 


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Swale Food Forest & Garden Kitchen Lab

This fall Swale and the Garden Kitchen Lab hosted a free public meal showcasing salads, herbal teas, and roasted butternut and delicata squashes from Swale’s floating food forest and the Garden Kitchen Lab. The event took place at Pier 6 in Dumbo. We had hundreds of people enjoying an afternoon of foraging and harvesting in a food-forest-park setting.

Swale is a collaborative floating food forest where people may visit, partake in the caretaking process, and learn about food sustainability. Created by artist Mary Mattingly, Swale functions as both an evolving sculpture and a tool by producing healthy food at the intersection of public art and utility. Visitors to Swale will see persimmon, bok choy, yucca, onion, tomatillos, herbs, and other perennial fruits, vegetables, and medicinal plants. Rainwater is collected from the rooftop of the Biome Arts Greenhouse Theater, a pavilion that serves as a performance space, activist meeting hall, and artist gallery aboard Swale.

Learn more about Swale on our Public Art page and see other Swale-based events here.

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Garden Kitchen Lab Bliss

In our Garden Kitchen Lab program, 8 to 13 years old, participate in preparing coconut almond bliss balls. The children learn about tropical fruits and nuts and how to make a healthy snack while having fun. This two-part class introduces children to the countries and the farmers who grow and harvest nuts around the globe, and the different kinds of pollination to grow the ingredients needed to make the recipe. Walnuts, almond paste, pistachios, coconut and sesame seeds are some of the ingredients used this coconut almond bliss ball recipe.

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Simiah, Alyssa, Perla, and Simone making bliss balls at the kitchen’s center.

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Students watched a short video about vanilla plant pollination and fair trade in Uganda. The vanilla flower is so small, a tiny vanilla-flower bee is the only insect that can pollinate it. To pollinate enough plants, and other vanilla products, the flowers have to be fertilized, by hand one by one! This delicate labor is fair trade, and Ugandan farmers can build their houses and be homeowners and send their children to college.

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14Seventy-five children at the After School program ate this sugar-free organic snack, and they loved it!