Watermark University: Sliders, Sides, and Sips

The Community Life Team decided to do a fun and healthy Watermark University class on the first day of summer. Becky, Community Life Director; Trish, Community Life Assistant at The Inn, and Kaitlan, Community Life Assistant at The Springs all got together to brainstorm about a healthy summer menu we could prepare. Kaitlan is vegan so we decided to do vegan sliders with small pretzel buns, vegan chive and onion cream cheese, a slice of a plum tomato and fresh lettuce leaves, all organic.

For side dishes, we did small skewers with a round cherry tomato, fresh basil leaf, and a marinated round mozarella ball. Then we sprayed them with a balsamic vinaigrette. The Mozarella balls were marinated in olive oil with several herbs and they were delicious with the tomato and basil. Another side dish we prepared was baked wontons with coleslaw. We used a cupcake/muffin pan and put two won tons in each of the spaces, turning them so the pointed ends go all around creating a cup to hold the coleslaw. The coleslaw was made with two packages of different kinds of slaw mix from Trader Joe’s. One had the purple and red cabbage with carrots and the other had chopped broccoli, kale, white cabbage, onions, pumpkin seeds, and dried orange rind. We added sesame seeds, salt, pepper, and a ginger soy dressing. The slaw was placed in each wonton cup…and what a hit it was! Everyone loved the flavor of the slaw and the crunchiness of the wontons. We also served orange cream jello shots made with orange cream vodka and orange jello…another huge hit! In fact, they wanted the jello shots before they went through the food line, ha!

For beverages, we served an alcoholic drink with frozen raspberry juice, mixed with light beer and vodka, plus a small amount of lemon-lime drink. The non-alcoholic drink was raspberry sorbet mixed with orange/mango juice, pineapple juice, and ginger ale. Both drinks were delicious and not a drop left. We discussed the benefits of eating healthy, trying new things like vegan, vegetarian, and organic diets. Residents were surprised to find everything tasted so good and couldn’t tell it was primarily a vegan meal. We are fortunate to have stores in Oklahoma City now that carry so many choices for all the different diets everyone is eating now and the wonderful farmers markets all over the city. The fruits and vegetables taste so much better when organic and fresh, and it is exciting to try new creations with food.

In August the Community Life team will be doing another fun class on “Tacos and Tequila” with healthy side dishes and summer beverages, and residents have already asked if we are doing a “tequila jello shot,” so that will definitely be on the menu!.

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