OSHKOSH - National Food Day meant a chance for some Oshkosh middle school students to test their taste buds.
About 300 South Park Middle School students tried jicama Wednesday. Area chefs helped with recipes for the exotic vegetable.
The program aims to educate students about making healthy food choices at school and at home.
"It's good, it's delightful," said 6th grade student Braden Christie.
"I'm not the biggest at trying in the world, I'm not daring, I am at roller coasters and things like that but not foods," Christie said.
Chefs from the Roxy and Primo Restaurants in Oshkosh created several recipes for students to try. All of them getting an enthusiastic thumbs up.
Making school lunches healthy is a challenge for the district, but making them fun can also help make healthy habits at home.
"This is a part of making new foods available to the kids, letting them know what's out there so they can try some new things," said Oshkosh Area School District food service director Peggy West.
The chefs say creating fresh and nutritious foods can be easy and affordable.
"If you give them that fun environment right from the start, I can even see it here, they have a better attitude about trying it," said Elliot Boushele, chef at the Roxy in Oshkosh.
The very reason for the event.
"I had never tried jicama until last week so if we can get them to try something that is as unique as jicama and like it, the possibilities are endless I think," said Ellie Krueger with ReThink, a partnership with the Winnebago County Health Department.
Meaning students like Braden won't be so afraid to try the next exotic food...
"It tasted delightful, it had a nice sweet taste," said Christie.
To show up on their plates.
The school district offers elementary school students a new vegetable each month through its healthy eating program.
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