White Hall Willing Workers EHC learns about Mexican cooking


Willing Workers of White Hall Extension Homemakers Club met recently in the meeting room of White Hall Library for its regular meeting.

President Cheri Aronowitz welcomed everyone and Peggie Barbaree read the Thought of the Month — “The best inheritance a father can leave his children is a good example.”

Karen Needler, vice president led the Homemaker’s Creed and Marnette Reed read the Handy Hint — “Fill plastic bottles a quarter of the way full and lay on the side and put into freezer. When frozen, fill with water and have ice cold water on the go.

Sue Medlock gave the Inspiration Reading — “It Ain’t Rocket Science” — from Paula Deen’s Kitchen Wisdom and Recipe Journal.

Members answered roll call by naming their favorite Mexican food. Members present were Aronowitz, Barbaree, Jo Ann Carr, Sarah Payton, Sara Hester, Sheila Childers, Needler, Medlock, Reed, Elizabeth Wall, Brynn Koschel and Mary Wall. Mary Ann Kizer, University of Arkansas Extensioin Sevice family and consumer science agent, was a guest.

Carr presented the program on “Mexican Cooking — Learn to Cook Favorite Dishes.” She gave some suggestions for making Mexican food healthier, such as using herbs to season with instead of salt. Salsa is one of the healthiest traditional dishes of the Southwest. It’s very easy to make, especially in the summer when different kinds of peppers, tomatoes and onion are fresh from the garden. Reduce the salt when you are making salsa and use fresh veggies as dippers, instead of corn chips. One goal for healthier diets is to eat what is grown within your state or region. Several Mexican recipes from the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension were discussed with ways to reduce fat level and cholesterol. Carr passed out copies of recipes from the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension.

Leader reports:

Community Service – Barbaree, community service chairman, reported 122 cancer turbans have been completed and over 100 cut out and ready to sew. Work is ongoing on caps for Arkansas Children’s Hospital. ACH is needing teaching dolls and a workshop was scheduled to cut out dolls. The community service project for this calendar year to be used for the project book for judging at next year’s state meeting was discussed. The wreath project for White Hall Nursing and Rehabilitation Center was chosen. Several boxes of cereal were brought for the White Hall Food Pantry and will be delivered by Aronowitz. The Christmas project for the nursing home was also discussed.

Education – Brynn Koschel reported that four members and Kizer went to the Pink Tomato Festival in Warren and enjoyed the Tomato Luncheon and checked out the craft exhibits and the quilt show at the courthouse. A Cookie Swap was scheduled for Nov. 6 at Koschel’s home. Cookies from different countries will be made by members and exchanged. A trip to Crystal Bridges Museum will be planned for the fall.

Leadership – Carr reported that each member had talked about themselves during the year and asked Kizer to tell the members a few things about herself that they probably didn’t know.

Wreath Project — Payton reported she and Catherine Atkinson had added flags to the wreaths on the patient’s doors at the White Hall Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Kizer announced the next Mediterranean Cooking Class and there will be an Extension Wellness Training at the Ferndale 4-H Center on Aug. 22.

Aronowitz announced there will be a County Fellowship Trip to Rice Expo in Stuttgart on Aug. 1 and a play at the Arts & Science Center. The county picnic will be held Aug. 9 at the Extension Office. The August club picnic will be at Carr’s home on the regular meeting date. Christmas in July was to be held at the Extension Office on July 24. She reminded members to bring finger food and recipe to Christmas in July and the club would serve as hostesses.

A meal of tamales, chili, guacamole salad, enchilada rice, salsa and chips was furnished by Reed and Carr.

Aronowitz congratulated the club on its 25th anniversary. Barbaree, Carr and Reed were all recognized as being charter members. Birthday cake and ice cream was served at the conclusion of the meeting.

The club meets at 7 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the White Hall Library. Those interested in learning more about Extension Homemakers, may call Kizer at 870-534-1033.